Nov. 23, 2001
SAN DIEGO, CA - In dramatic fashion, UCLA came from behind to tie the game in the final minute and went on to defeat Loyola Marymount, 3-2 in double overtime in an NCAA first round game played at the University of San Diego's Torero Stadium Friday night.
Down 2-1 with less than a minute to play, the Bruins earned a corner kick. Midfielder Ryan Futagaki sent a ball into the box to defender Alex Yi. Yi's header was blocked by an LMU player, but the ball went straight to Cliff McKinley, who headed it in the back of the net for the equalizer with 43 seconds left on the clock.
"Everyone was fighting for the ball since it was down to the last minute," explained McKinley. "Alex went up for it, it was blocked, and the ball happened to pop out my way."
After a scoreless first overtime period, UCLA quickly attacked LMU's defense. Midfielder Jimmy Frazelle intercepted an LMU pass and sent the ball to a streaking Tim Pierce, who found himself alone with just Lion goalkeeper Dan Sheridan to beat. Pierce sent the ball into the left corner of the net for the game-winning goal at the 108:01 mark.
"They just turned over the ball, and it got to Jimmy, who had fresh legs," said Pierce. "Luckily, he looked up and saw that I was wide open."
Pierce had earlier put the Bruins on the scoreboard first, recording his first goal of the evening at the 31:51 mark after following through on a Futagaki saved shot.
Loyola Marymount equalized seven minutes later on a Kevin Novak goal and then took the lead 2-1 in the 67th minute on a Pat Parker shot from 35 yards out before the Bruins staged their last-minute rally.
"There was a lot on the line tonight," said Yi. "They (LMU) played really well, but we came out and got the win. Thankfully we came out victorious."
"The win speaks well for our depth," added UCLA head coach Todd Saldana. "We've been down before, and again we showed the character it takes to come back."
UCLA will next face San Diego in the second round on Sunday, Nov. 25 at 1:00 pm in Torero Stadium. San Diego has won the last two matchups, all at home.
"This is the match we were hoping would happen," said Saldana. "We took the first step by winning tonight. We've lost to them twice in a row. The odds and motivation are in our favor."