Matadors roll to 5-1 victory against Aggies

The+Matadors+defense+continues+to+roll%2C+with+a+near-shutout+against+the+New+Mexico+State+Aggies+in+a+3-1+victory.+Photo+credit%3A+File+Photo%2FThe+Sundial
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Matadors roll to 5-1 victory against Aggies

The Matadors defense continues to roll, with a near-shutout against the New Mexico State Aggies in a 3-1 victory. Photo credit: File Photo/The Sundial

The Matadors defense continues to roll, with a near-shutout against the New Mexico State Aggies in a 3-1 victory. Photo credit: File Photo/The Sundial

The Matadors defense continues to roll, with a near-shutout against the New Mexico State Aggies in a 3-1 victory. Photo credit: File Photo/The Sundial

The Matadors defense continues to roll, with a near-shutout against the New Mexico State Aggies in a 3-1 victory. Photo credit: File Photo/The Sundial

David Yapkowitz

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With 49 seconds left in the match, the goal scored by New Mexico State midfielder Aileen Galicia was just about the only blemish of the day.

Prior to that score, the California State University, Northridge women’s soccer team had little trouble with the visiting Aggies as they rolled to a 5-1 victory on Sunday afternoon in front of their home crowd.

The win improves the Matadors’ record to 3-1 on the season, including two shut outs against Portland State and Southern Utah University, respectively. The final goal by Galicia kept the Matadors from making it three shut outs in a row.

With the team only allowing one goal scored in the past three games, Head Coach Keith West attributed it to the Matador’s strong defense game.

“Our defense is very good, they’re organized, they’re disciplined, they’re hard working,” said West. “We have got a lot of character on that side of the ball.

The Matadors allowed the Aggies only six shots on goal the entire match, compared to their 13.

In addition to the defense, the match was also highlighted by CSUN’s strong offense.

The Matadors scored three goals in the first half, the first coming from sophomore forward Cynthia Sanchez with only five minutes having passed. The goal was her third of the season and was assisted by junior midfielder Camille Watson.

CSUN’s other two goals of the first half came from sophomore midfielder Kiley Norkus. Her two goals came within ten minutes of each other and they were her first of the season. The first goal was assisted by junior forward Breanna McCallum.

“I knew it was going to happen eventually,” said Norkus. “I just needed that moment to break through and it happened today in front of all of my friends. That felt really good.”

Norkus also credited the Matador’s defensive game in leading the way to victory.

“We have been working really hard, we have a lot of strategies that have been paying off.” said Norkus. “In practice we work on it every single day so repetition is really paying off.”

The second half was more of the same, the Aggies never really threatened to make a game of it and the Matadors were able to score two more goals. Their first goal of the second half came with nine minutes left, from freshman forward Kirsten Von Meter. The second, from junior midfielder Kourtney Kutscher, just added more salt to the wound.

It was Von Meter’s first goal of the season and Kutscher’s third.

West believes that the team’s strong play following their season opening 1-0 loss to Pepperdine is largely due to making the game more simple and playing to the team’s strengths.

“We just have to stick to what we do well, the wins will come,” said West. “Don’t complicate things, just keep it as simple as you can. I felt that is what we have done the last couple of games.”

The Matadors hope to keep up their recent play as they take their talent on the road with only one match at home in the next seven games.

According to Norkus, the team shares a strong bond and will continue to grow together in order to propel them to more wins.

“We are really connected as a team as people and as players,” said Norkus. “On the field it is really starting to show.”

West is hoping that the energy will carry over as the team prepares for their upcoming matches.

“We have to clean some things up,” said West. “But that is why you play games, to get better.”

The Matadors next challenge will be at Fresno State University on Friday, Sept. 4 at 7 p.m. They will return home against the University of Detroit Mercy on Sunday, Sept. 6 at 1 p.m. before they embark on a five game road trip including the Nike Portland Invitational the weekend of Sept. 11.