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No. 8 Penn State Women’s Soccer Wins 1-0 Over Santa Clara

On Sunday night, No. 8 Penn State women’s soccer (4-1-1) played the finale of its two-game California trip, defeating Santa Clara (1-4-0) 1-0.

The Nittany Lions clinched the win with an early goal that bounced off a Santa Clara defender after a cross from Payton Linnehan. The goal ended up being the only scoring for either side.

How It Happened

The Nittany Lions began the match by rooting themselves deep in Santa Clara’s half, testing its defensive line. The Broncos seemed prepared for powerhouses like Ally Schlegel and Penelope Hocking and were able to work the ball closer to Penn State’s goal.

Santa Clara took the first corner of the night in the 11th minute and chose to play it back. Even though it was put back into the 18, the Broncos couldn’t make a shot.

Penn State took control, and Payton Linnehan made a beautiful cross to Hocking, who shot a rocket off her left foot but was too wide with it.

In the 14th minute, the Nittany Lions rushed the goal and Linnehan sent another cross, this time to Kate Wiesner. Wiesner was blocked by Santa Clara’s Emma Reeves, who couldn’t get the right angle on the ball, resulting in an own goal that put Penn State up 1-0.

Schlegel made a great play in the 34th minute after some back-and-forth possession between the two teams, but Santa Clara’s Makoto Nezu drew a foul and showed Penn State the team’s defensive strength.

Izzy D’Aquila gave Santa Clara its first shot on goal in minute 36 off of a header, but she sent the ball straight to Kat Asman’s hands. Shortly after, D’Aquila tried again but it landed too far right.

With just 15 seconds left in the half, Amelia White nearly landed a Penn State second goal. White’s shot barely slipped past the post, leaving the score 1-0 at the half.

Both Penn State and Santa Clara start out the second half with shots, two by the Broncos and one by the Nittany Lions, in the first three minutes. Neither side was able to snag a goal, though.

In the 59th minute, D’Aquila nearly evened the score with a great shot that Asman couldn’t block, but the ball just barely missed the goal. Shots from D’Aquila and an aggressive offensive line were more of a threat for Penn State in the second half, increasing from four shots in the first half to 16 by minute 70.

Kaitlyn MacBean finally gave Penn State the much-needed switch and drove the ball toward the Broncos’ goal, eventually winning a corner kick. Although it didn’t result in anything, it gave the Nittany Lions an opportunity to play more offensively.

Penn State kept its 1-0 lead and ended its California trip with a win under its belt.

Player Of The Match

Kat Asman | Goal Keeper

Asman played a great match, especially in the second half when Santa Clara camped out in Penn State’s half. Saving four goals and keeping her back line cool, calm, and collected was exactly what the Nittany Lions needed to keep their early lead.

What’s Next

The Nittany Lions will return to Happy Valley for their matchup against Liberty at 7 p.m. on Thursday, September 8. The game can be seen on TV on the Big Ten Network.

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About the Author

Mackenna Yount

Mackenna is a junior food science major from Manitou Springs, Colorado and is one of Onward State's associate editors. She loves food, is addicted to coffee, and can give you random facts or bad jokes that you didn't ask for. Ask her to bake gluten-free goodies so she has an excuse to try out new cupcake flavors. Mackenna can be contacted via Twitter @mackennayount (especially if you want to show off your best dad jokes) or you can shoot her an email at [email protected]

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