SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – On an overcast Friday morning, UC Santa Barbara showed up and showed out in their first official match of the season and first match of the Winter Invitational by absolutely dominating Fresno Pacific 21 to 0. Even by halftime the score was an eye-widening 13 to 0. To simply put it, the Sunbirds were severely outmatched on both sides of the pool.
Almost every player on UCSB's roster made a goal during the game, several having multi goal performances. Incredibly, the Gauchos as a team would score 21 goals on just 27 shots, resulting in a .778 shooting percentage. Every shot that can be imagined was made in the game: floaters, backhands, one timers, skippers, and more. Better yet, 11 of those goals would come from fluid assists from other teammates.
While the offensive numbers stand out in the box score, the Gaucho's defense was just as remarkable if not better. Not only did the Gauchos hold the Sunbirds to 0 goals, but they did so on the Fresno Pacific's 20 attempts on goal. UCSB goalies Kenzi Snyder (6 saves) and Becca Buck (3 saves) did not have to worry about much as their teammates were creating hard angles for Sunbird's to shoot all game. As well as this, the Gaucho's would swipe away the ball 17 times.
The top standout performers of the day were Kate Pipkin (4 goals, 3 assists, 1 steal), Natalie Selin (3 goals, 3 assists, 3 steals), Emily Martin (4 goals) and Sarah Snyder (4 goals, 1 ex, 1 national anthem). You read that right, sophomore Sarah Snyder sang, performed, and nailed the national anthem. The utility player showed that she can really play anywhere needed, even on the mic.
"My mom put me in choir when I was four years old and that's when I started learning music and stuff like that," Snyder said laughingly. "I've sang my whole life and Serela just asked me to do it, and I was like, 'okay' and my grandparents are here so of course I wanted to (sing) in front of my family."
After reminiscing on her out of pool performance, Snyder reflected on the match.
"It was good today. As a person and as a team we could definitely play better, but it was a solid win overall."
Tomorrow, the Gauchos will continue play in the Winter Invitational starting with a matchup against Cal Baptist at 12:30 p.m. and later squaring up with Michigan in the afternoon at 5 p.m., both at Campus Pool.