Denver Edges UC Davis 15-14 in Overtime

DAVIS, Calif. -- Sophomore attacker Kara Secora netted a game-high six goals and sophomore midfielder Alex Befus posted a goal and assist in overtime, leading Denver to a 15-14 win over UC Davis in a Mountain Pacific Sports Federation thriller at Aggie Stadium Sunday afternoon.

The Aggies dip to 10-3 for the year, evening their conference record to 2-2. The Pioneers move to 4-10 overall and improve to 2-1 in MPSF contests.

Senior Christina Corsa fired four goals and an assist to lead UC Davis offensively, while senior Gina Hoffmire added a hat trick. Anna Geissbuhler and Lauren Nardi netted two goals each, with Hannah Mirza, Vannessa Jamison and Meghan Jordan accounting for the balance of the Aggie scoring. Jamison also had an assist and a game-best five ground balls for UC Davis.

Secora contributed on almost three-fourths of DU's scoring, adding five assists to her six goals for 11 points. Befus finished with four goals and assist. Sophomore midfielder Kate Henrich tallied five caused turnovers on defense.

Befus scored two goals in the opening minutes to boost the Pioneers to a 4-1 lead before Hoffmire and Corsa finished shots to trim the deficit to a single goal. Secora assisted Befus with 13:23 then scored back-to-back goals in the final three minutes to boost Denver's lead to 7-4 at the halftime break.

However, UC Davis enjoyed a 5-1 run early in the second half to erase the Pioneer lead. Nardi, Geissbuhler and Corsa delivered goals in a span of 1:36 to bring the score to 8-7 in DU's favor. Secora connected for her fourth goal to bump the Pioneer lead to two at the 21:47 mark, but goals by Jordan and Jamison equalized the contest to 9-9 with 19:10 left in regulation.

UC Davis tied the game three more times in the second half. Nardi made it 10-10 at the 17:11 mark, Corsa's player-up goal with 9:40 left made it 12-12, and Hoffmire's successful eight-meter attempt brought the tally to 13-13 with 5:14 on the clock.

Denver's Lauren Ciccomascolo won the next draw and the Pioneers ran more than four minutes from the clock in hopes to scoring the game-winner in the final minute. Befus took a shot with 31 seconds left but missed high. Then Jordan stick-checked Secora near the DU restraining line and quickly transitioned to the Aggies' attacking third. But UC Davis was unable to fire a shot in those final 18 seconds, sending the game into overtime.

Jordan won her own draw to open the overtime period and Hoffmire took advantage with a goal, giving the Aggies their first lead of the contest. Hoffmire won the next draw control but the Aggies turned the ball as they advanced into their offensive third. Secora won the ground ball and assisted Befus in transition for the game-tying effort with 49 ticks in the first overtime segment. The Aggies managed two shots in the final seconds before the changeover but could not score.

In the second overtime segment, Jordan won the draw control but Henrich's stick check gave possession to the Pioneers. Befus assisted freshman Jenn Etzel for the game-winner with 2:18 remaining. DU managed to kill most of the clock until Hoffmire's steal gave the Aggies one last possession with 51 ticks on the clock. However, a Cailie Murphy blocked pass ended the UC Davis threat as the clock wound down.

Overall, the Aggies outshot the Pioneers by a 34-28 margin and won 18 of the game's 33 draws. On the flipside, UC Davis struggled to just 3 for 9 shooting on eight-meter chances, and had four of its nine clear attempts broken in the first half.

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2011-04-10



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