No. 20 Pepperdine defeats No. 5 Boston College in defensive battle
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- The first meeting between No. 20 Pepperdine and No. 5 Boston College ended as a 1-0 upset on Saturday at Soldiers Field. The Waves (8-3-0) took the lead early in the second half and used a solid defensive effort from there against the Eagles (8-2-2) .
“The Waves made [Pepperdine] very, very proud today,” Pepperdine head coach Tim Ward said. “Every girl, whether they were on the bench or on the field, was giving it their all. We just beat a very good soccer team.”
After a scoreless first half, featuring legitimate scoring opportunities for both sides, Callie Payetta took a feed from Ally Holz at the top of the box and buried it in the 47th minute to give the Waves a lead they would not surrender. It was the first goal of the season for Payetta and the eighth of her career.
With a goal advantage, Pepperdine focused on protection against a relentless Eagle assault. BC held a 9-2 shot edge after the intermission and sent as many as six players into the box, but the Waves did not yield.
“Our back line put in a major shift today,” Ward said. “They were awesome. We’ve come a long way. There were times in the last 10 minutes where we were just throwing bodies in front of the ball. There was a lot of courageous defending going on late.”
All told, Boston College outshot Pepperdine 20-7, but the Waves held a 5-2 edge in shots on goal. Lynn Williams fired a team-high five shots, three on target, while both of Payetta’s attempts were on frame. Kristen Mewis led BC with five shots.
Roxanne Barker recorded her second consecutive shutout of the season and made a pair of saves.
Both teams created opportunities in the opening half, but could not convert. Although the Eagles held an 11-5 shot advantage before the intermission, Pepperdine’s opportunities were dangerous, with Williams firing four shots.
“We have a lot of respect for the BC program,” Ward said. “They are a very good team. This is the best performance we’ve put together all year and the opponent demanded it. To come out and beat a program with the tradition of Boston College is a huge victory for us.”