Freshman McCarthy lifts UCLA
Goal in 65th minute puts Bruins in second round
LOS ANGELES -- Freshman reserve Kylie McCarthy broke open a scoreless tie in the 65th minute on Friday, lifting the second-seeded UCLA women's soccer team to a 1-0 victory against New Mexico in an NCAA first-round match at Drake Stadium. With the win, the Bruins (16-1-3) move on and will host San Diego (12-7-1) next Friday in the second round. A time for that match has not yet been determined.
McCarthy's goal came at the 64:53 mark of the second half when she took advantage of a mishandled ball by New Mexico goalkeeper Kelli Cornell. Freshman Samantha Mewis hit a long-distance shot into the box and although Cornell stopped the shot, she was unable to get a hold of it. McCarthy pounced on it, beating Cornell to the ball and scoring from close range.
"New Mexico is a really good team," said UCLA head coach B.J. Snow, who picked up his first NCAA tournament victory on Friday. We knew this was going to be a really tough task for us. I think we did better keeping possession of the ball in the second half. Sam got a ball in a good spot and hit a good shot and Kylie McCarthy was there to finish it. That was exactly what we talked about at halftime. We had to get more people in the box because they were dropping so deep."
Prior to McCarthy's goal, junior Chelsea Cline nearly put UCLA ahead in the 50th minute when she hit a long-range shot off the crossbar. The Bruins dictated play for most of the night, finishing with a 16-3 advantage in shots.
The Lobos (12-5-4) had their two best chances of the night early on in the match, as Zaneta Wyne got loose deep in Bruin territory and launched a ball that sailed just over the crossbar. Jennifer Williams also got loose for a one-on-one opportunity with UCLA goalkeeper Katelyn Rowland in the 11th minute. Rowland came off her line and stuffed the shot before Williams was able to get a good angle on it.
"You got to be confident if you're a goalkeeper and she has that quiet confidence about her," said Snow of Rowland, who was playing in her first NCAA tournament game. "In the tournament, you got to have a goalkeeper who is going to make a couple big saves a game. Their goalkeeper made some saves and Katelyn came up with two big saves for us. None of these freshmen are freshmen anymore."
The Bruins started six freshmen on Friday, as a total of 10 UCLA players appeared in their first NCAA tournament game.
UCLA hosts the second and third rounds of the tournament next Friday and Sunday. In addition to the UCLA-San Diego match, Miami and Long Beach State will also be in action at Drake Stadium on Friday.