Matadors deal Runnin’ Rebels’ first home defeat

Brandon Henson

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Matador freshman Brittanie Sakajian scored the game-winning goal against UNLV. Photo Credit: Alex Valladares

Freshman Brittanie Sakajian picked up her second goal of the season as the CSUN women’s soccer team defeated UNLV, 1-0, Sunday evening. The Matadors delivered the Rebels their first home loss of the season in the Las Vegas tournament.

The lone goal came in the 63rd minute of the competition when junior midfielder Alexis Barbara recorded her first career assist. Barbara raced towards the Rebels (5-2) goal and kicked a long right cross along the field that linked up with Sakajian, who then placed the ball in the net.

Before the tournament began, Sakajian stated that the Matadors were going to beat both teams in the tournament. She backed up her words this weekend as CSUN defeated Kansas Friday, 1-0, and Sakajian recorded her game-winning goal against the Rebels.

Overall Sakajian, who also has two assists this season, thought the team played well against the two teams.

“I think we played really well, our defense was sound and our offense is close to being truly great,” Sakajian said. “It feels good to come out with two wins, especially being far away on the road instead of at home.”

Sophomore goalkeeper Cynthia Jacobo showed her strength, making seven saves in the game with four coming in just the first half of regulation. The Rebels started the game striking at the Matador net, taking nine shots compared to three for the Matadors in an intense offensive struggle for both teams.

In all, UNLV took 14 shots at the net with seven being on goal, while CSUN took seven shots with five placed on goal. The Rebels also recorded seven corner kicks to the Matadors’ one. Freshman Kylie Wassell had three saves in the game for the Rebels.

Matadors head coach Keith West thought his team played phenomenally and had excellent performances in the tournament. He also said he truly believes his team is better this year than last.

One thing the Matadors had problems with in the tournament is foul trouble. The team was hit with 10 foul penalties total, compared with the Rebels’ five. Yet the Rebels’ Ashleigh Shoughro received a yellow card for being wrapped up with sophomore Stephanie Galarze early in the game.

Junior Heidi Farran was excited about the two-game winning streak and winning four of their last five games.

“It feels good, it feels really good,” Farran said. “I thought we played really good, we just got to keep at it at practice and we’ll continue to win.”

The Matadors will return to the field Friday at 7 p.m. when they face the Ivy League Penn Quakers in a matchup under the lights at Matador Field.