Nov. 2, 2001
Los Angeles - In a battle of two second-place teams, the fifth-ranked UCLA women's soccer team kept its Pac-10 title hopes alive Friday, registering a 1-0 victory over No. 16 Washington at UCLA's Drake Stadium. With the victory, UCLA improves to 14-2 on the year and 5-1 in Pac-10 play. With the loss, Washington falls to 10-4-1 overall and 4-2 in conference action.
In a match thoroughly dominated by the Bruins, the game's only goal was actually credited as an own goal by the Huskies. In the 30th minute of the match, Bruin forward Stephanie Rigamat dribbled a ball into the far right corner of the Washington box, hitting a hard cross through the middle that was deflected past Husky goalkeeper Hope Solo by her own defender.
Following the goal, UCLA had two more excellent scoring opportunities. In the 35th minute, Bruin forward Staci Duncan broke through the Washington defense, creating a one-on-one with the goalkeeper. Solo however, came off of her line to make a great save by smothering the ball before Duncan could get the shot off. In the 60th minute of play, Bruin forward Mary-Frances Monroe hit a hard, left-footed shot from about 20 yards out that deflected off the crossbar.
The Bruin defense played one of its best games of the year, holding Washington to just two shots, including none in the second half. UCLA managed 20 shots on the day and was led by Monroe who had six.
Friday's win keeps UCLA in the hunt for the Pac-10 title as the Bruins move to 5-1 in conference action with three games to play. Stanford leads the conference with a perfect 5-0 mark, however the Bruins and Cardinal will face each other next weekend in the Bay Area. If UCLA wins out, they are guaranteed at least a share of the 2001 Pac-10 Championship and will receive the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
Friday's match will be aired throughout the country on various Fox Sports Net affiliates. Fans in Los Angeles can see the game this Sunday, Nov. 4 at 1:30 p.m. and again on Wednesday, Nov. 7 at Noon.
UCLA returns to the field this Sunday to host Washington State at Drake Stadium beginning at Noon. Sunday is also Senior Day for nine Bruin seniors playing in their final home match.