CINCINNATI, Ohio – Senior Madison Beckley and sophomore Dakota Griggs each scored their first goals of the season to help visiting UC Santa Barbara to a 2-2 stalemate at the University of Cincinnati on Sunday.
The Gauchos (2-1-1) built a two-goal lead on the strength of Griggs' score in the second half, but the Bearcats' (2-1-1) relentless pressure paid off with a pair of goals in the final 6:37 of regulation to knot the match. Neither team scored in the overtime periods.
"This was not a pretty game," said UCSB head coach Paul Stumpf. "It was a bouncy surface and they are kind of a boot-and-scoot team. I also felt that the match was poorly officiated."
Beckley, who played her freshman season at Ohio State, gave UCSB a 1-0 lead at the 29:39 mark when she headed a cross from senior Geneve Dromensk inside the far post. Freshman Amanda Ball also received an assist on the goal.
Griggs' goal came in the 69th minute when sophomore McKinsey Martinez crossed a pass that she struck past goalkeeper Kristina Utley into the right post, giving the Gauchos a 2-0 lead.
Cincinnati halved the lead at the 83:23 mark when Danielle Rotheram's shot from just outside the 18-yard box beat UCSB's Beth Ritter, going in to the left post. The Bearcats tied the match at 87:37 as Rotheram beat a Gaucho defender to the endline and pounded a cross that Jae Atkinson put into the back post.
"We got to the 15 minute mark, or around that time, and we just didn't do a good enough job of dealing with their pressure," Stumpf said. "We just didn't close out the game the way we would have liked."
Each team had one solid opportunity in the first 10 minute overtime period, but Ritter saved a shot by the Bearcats' Katy Couperus and Utley saved a shot by Santa Barbara's Miranda Cornejo. In addition, the Gauchos had a goal disallowed because of an offsides call.
In the second OT, Cincinnati had a pair of opportunities, but a header by Vanessa Gilles sailed high and a shot by Couperus was saved by Ritter, her seventh and final save of the match.
Overall, the Bearcats outshot the Gauchos 17-7, including a 9-5 advantage in shots on goal. The home team also had a 7-4 advantage in corner kicks.
UCSB returns to action on Thursday, Sept. 4 when it travels to Stanford for a 7:00 match against the fifth-ranked Cardinal. The contest will be televised on the Pac 12 Network. The Gauchos next home match will be on Sunday, Sept. 7 when they host Loyola Marymount at 6:00 p.m. in Harder Stadium