LONG BEACH, Calif. – The UC Santa Barbara women's soccer team ended their three-game road trip with a 1-0 loss to the Long Beach State 49ers at George Allen Field on Sunday night.
Junior goalkeeper Hanna DeWeese made six saves and the Gauchos had 10 shots in their second conference away defeat.
Three of DeWeese's saves came in the first half hour of the game as Long Beach State controlled the tempo of the match early.
The 49ers' earned a favorable chance in the 34th minute after freshman centerback Lauren Hess fouled Long Beach midfielder Dana Fujikuni two yards out from the top of the Gaucho penalty area on the left side. The ensuing free kick, taken by forward/midfielder Katie Pingel, was saved by DeWeese at her near post as she kept the game scoreless.
Long Beach continued to pepper the Gauchos' goalkeeper with just over three minutes to go in the first half as forward Kayla Cannon carried the ball into the right side of the Gaucho penalty area before playing a backpass to the top of the box for freshman Sierra Castles to take on her right foot, where she looked to loft the ball into the top right corner of goal but hit the side netting instead.
After being outshot 8-2 in the first 45 minutes, UCSB came out of the locker room with more to offer going forward.
The best chance of the night for the Gauchos came in the 53rd minute, when a cross from the right wing connected with sophomore forward Cate Post's run towards the far post, but Long Beach State goalkeeper Imani McDonald made a point blank save on Post to keep her clean sheet bid intact. The save was one of three that McDonald was forced into on the night.
Just over a minute later in the 64th, 49ers defender Chloe Froment floated a ball into the box from a free kick deep in Gaucho territory, where defender Sarah Maher flicked the ball towards goal. The Gauchos' DeWeese got a hand to it, but it popped up into the air and crossed the goal line on its way down before any UCSB defenders could clear it upfield.
Long Beach had a chance to double their advantage in the 68th minute, but Rola Badawiya's penalty kick hit the left post and she sent her follow-up attempt wide left of goal.
Unfortunately for the Gauchos, they were unable to convert any of their five shots in the remainder of the game into a game-tying goal as the game concluded in favor of the home side.
With the loss, the Gauchos slip into a three-way tie for fourth place in the Big West with Hawai'I and CSUN, the final two opponents on UCSB's regular season schedule. By virtue of their superior overall record, UCSB holds the tiebreaker for fourth place over both teams.
UCSB's next matchup is at home to Cal State Fullerton on Friday, October 19 at 7:00 p.m.