Southern Cal Routs Saint Mary's in MPSF Action

MORAGA, Calif. USC (6-4, 4-0 MPSF) posted a score of 18-4 to crush Saint Mary's (0-8, 0-6) and remain undefeated in Mountain Pacific Sports Federation (MPSF) games this season. It was the third-straight win for the Women of Troy, which ties a program-long streak.

The Trojans never let up as they out-shot the Gaels, 29-3, in the first half alone and finished with a 43-9 margin in the game. USC's defense was stout as well as it forced Saint Mary's to turn the ball over 24 times. The Trojans also picked up 15 ground balls to the Gaels' 10.

Sophomore attacker Caroline de Lyra was the USC offensive catalyst as she posted two goals and three assists to go with a ground ball and a draw control. Freshmen Alex Moore and Annie Ruland each scored two goals. Moore added a pair of assists and had a ground ball and draw control. Off the bench, sophomores Olivia Gerton, Paige Bonomi, and Maggie Mawhinney each had two goals apiece.

Freshman midfielder Michaela Michael scored a pair of goals and led the team with three draw controls. Sophomore midfielder Amanda Johansen had a goal, two draw controls, and a ground ball in the winning effort. Defensively, sophomore Kaitlyn Couture and freshman Gabby McMahon each had two of USC's 15 ground balls. In the net, sophomore Liz Shaeffer picked up a ground ball and caused two turnovers to go with her three saves.

For the Gaels, Meagan Bennett, Krista Morgan, Anna Turpit, and Allie DeBruhl each had goals. Katherine Herzog put up 10 saves but allowed 10 goals. Sydney Pinello gave up eight goals in relief of Herzog. Rachel Minarovich had six draw controls while Jaclyn Biggers had five with a pair of assists.

USC scored first as de Lyra dropped a pass off to Moore at the top of the crease for a goal just one minute into the contest. The Gaels had an answer at 25:41 when DeBruhl scored on an assist from Biggers following a Saint Mary's clear. The Trojans needed just 40 seconds to go up, 2-1, as freshman Nina Kelty caused one of her two turnovers that de Lyra used to find Johansen for the score. The Gaels grabbed the next draw but Shaeffer's save propelled USC to the other end of the field where sophomore attacker Haleigh Dalmass produced a 3-1 lead on a free-position goal.

Michael won the next draw and got the ball to Moore who fed Ruland for the goal and a 4-1 USC lead. McMahon's forced turnover and ground ball flipped the field and took de Lyra to the other end where she blasted a breakaway shot past the Gael keeper for a 5-1 lead. De Lyra did it the hard way the next time down the field as she fought through the teeth of the SMC defense for an unassisted goal and a 6-1 lead. Freshman midfielder Kate Pederson won the next draw control before Moore dodged her way to goal and scored to give USC a 7-1 advantage with 15:09 left in the first half.

The teams traded barbs for five minutes before Michael went inside on USC ball movement for her first goal of the game and an 8-1 lead. Ruland pushed the Trojans in front, 9-1, on her unassisted goal, and freshman Kylie Drexel scored on a free-position shot for the 10-1 lead at 6:20 in the half. Unselfish offense helped the Trojans score their 11th goal when Michael and de Lyra connected on a give-and-go play for an 11-1 lead. With just one minute left before the break, Moore picked up another assist as she hit Bonomi on a crease roll for the goal and a 12-1 lead at halftime.

Freshman Shannon Nugent scored the first goal of the second half to put the Trojans up, 13-1, right out of the break. USC settled into a defensive set and forced the Gaels into a turnover that Shaeffer picked up to ignite another Trojan run which resulted in a goal for Bonomi and a 14-1 lead. Shaeffer's last act in goal was a big save on an eight-meter shot before sophomore Cassandra Collins came in for the final 21:20.

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