Oct. 29, 2012
Seattle, Wash. - In a very physical match between the top two teams in the conference, the sixth-ranked UCLA Bruins defeated the 24th-ranked Washington Huskies, 1-0, to take control of the Pac-12 title race. Senior Ryan Hollingshead scored the only goal of the match for the Bruins in the 12th minute.
UCLA improved to 11-2-2 with the win and are 6-1-0 in conference play with three matches to go. Meanwhile, the Huskies dropped to 11-4-3 and 6-1-2 in Pac-12 play with just one match remaining. The Bruins need six points in their final three matches to claim their fourth Pac-12 title in five years. In addition, UCLA upped its Pac-12 road winning streak to 14 matches and is now unbeaten in their last 17 matches on the road (15-0-2).
For the third straight match, UCLA got an early goal when Hollingshead executed a beautiful give-and-go with Reed Williams in the 12th minute for his fifth goal of the year. Hollingshead started the play with a layoff back to Williams, who sent a great chip into the box back to Hollingshead, who then finished with a sliding one-timer for the goal.
The rest of the half was a quiet one with neither side really seeing a serious scoring chance and the Bruins went into the locker room with a 1-0 lead.
At the start of the second half, Washington turned up the offensive intensity but both the UCLA defense and keeper Earl Edwards did a great job of continually turning away the Huskie attacks. UCLA was able to control possession for a time from there and in the 60th minute saw a great chance when Leo Stolz sent a corner kick into the box to Fernando Monge, who got a good head on it but sent the ball just wide of the goal.
As the second half wore on, the Huskies continued to send balls forward and put pressure on the UCLA defense, but the Bruins simply would not break and continually cleared away Washington's attacks. From there time would run out with the Bruins earning the 1-0 victory over the Huskies.
Overall, Washington outshot the Bruins by a slim margin of 10-6 with only one of their 10 shots being on target. The back line of Patrick Matchett, Joe Sofia, Matt Wiet and Javan Torre was outstanding in limiting the Huskies' chances. Edwards was also stellar in net, continually coming off of his line and stopping any scoring threats while also earning his fourth shutout of the season.
"Tonight's game was a hard-fought and well-deserved victory," said head coach Jorge Salcedo. "Washington is an extremely challenging team to play against because of their style, but our game-winning goal was a result of a good combination and a fantastic finish. This win does put us in control of our destiny in conference, although we are keenly aware that the most important game of our season is the next one against Stanford."
UCLA will return home this week to take on Stanford (7-7-1, 3-3-1 Pac-12) on Thursday, Nov. 1 at 7 pm and California (8-5-2, 3-3-1 Pac-12) on Sunday, Nov. 4 at 5 pm. Both matches will be played at Drake Stadium and nationally televised live on the Pac-12 Networks.