Senior forward Farryn Townley broke the school record with her 20th career goal on Sunday night as the Cal State Northridge women’s soccer team shutout UC Riverside in a 1-0 victory.
As water sprinkles littered Matador Field in the 32nd minute of play, Townley received the ball in the middle of the field and dribbled past a couple of defenders to score the lone goal of the match from 17 yards out.
With the goal, Townley surpassed former teammate Erin Broadwell for most goals in CSUN school history and marked her 10th career game-winning goal that tied her for ninth most in Big West history.
After the game Townley said she was delighted with her performance and her new record.
“I am definitely proud of myself, when they announced it I was super excited, it felt amazing,” Farryn said. “I did a little dribbling which is something I never do, I dribbled by a couple defenders and I kicked it to the upper cross bar into the far post.”
The game opened with the Highlanders controlling the kick and getting an early shot from forward Kayla Troesh that hit the crossbar in the second minute of play. As the half progressed, the Matadors took control of the ball.
Senior Erin Kelly took the first shot on goal for the Matadors in the fifth minute of play that was saved by Highlander goalkeeper Jessica White. Sophomore forward Melissa Fernandez and junior Heidi Farran followed her lead with shots of their own in the 12th and 15th minutes of the game, in the 19th minute Farran added a shot on goal to her stats on the night.
Head coach Keith West decided to switch things up in the 21st minute of the game bringing Sonia Espitia and Townley off the bench. West said he wanted to retain their energy.
“They put a lot of minutes into the game on Friday and they had one heck of a game on Friday and I wanted to make sure we had some player’s fresh at the end of the game,” West said, referring to the previous double overtime game against UC Irvine. “They are definitely some quality players but we got other quality players too and that is why they started.”
West’s game plan was efficient, as Townley scored her fifth goal of the season 10 minutes after she entered into the game.
As the first half concluded, Northridge led Irvine in shots 7-4 but neither team could find the goal as the defensive pressure lifted on both sides.
The second half started just as the first begun, this time with defender Kristy Adcock giving the Highlanders there second and final shot on goal of the game in the 47th minute.
The game continued with shots back and forth between the Matadors and Highlanders with each side taking seven shots in the second half. As time ticked away, the Matadors buckled down defensively as the Highlanders produced a small rally in the final ten minutes of play to no avail.
“(Defensively) we are strong; we have been strong all year, this is one heck of a squad we got going on right now and I think we are going to do very well at the end of this year,” West said. “I am proud of them and I cannot say enough about the team’s effort and who they are as people.”
CSUN goalkeeper Cynthia Jacobo recorded her sixth shutout of the year with two saves, which placed her in fourth all-time for most shutouts in a season.
“It’s not just me getting the shutout, it’s the team helping me throughout the whole game, defenders, forwards, midfielders are helping put away that goal,” Jacobo said. “It’s everybody, everybody’s putting the hard work and effort to keep the ball from our net and they have my back the whole time.”
White had six saves for the Highlanders in their fifth conference loss of the season.
The Matadors outshot the highlanders 14-11 and had an advantage with three corner kicks to the Highlanders one. West was pleased with his team’s performance.
“I loved it, we had a tough match with UC Irvine on Friday, we put it all on the line and some of our players got roughed up physically,” West said. “We were able to pull this one off tonight so I’m proud of the team, proud of the way we performed and we got the win, we got it done tonight.”
The Matadors remain in second place in the Big West Conference standings with 12 points and next the team travels to face Cal State Bakersfield in a non-conference match on Thursday night.