49ers Submerged by UCI
The stands were full with posters hanging on the fences for senior night on Thursday evening as the ’Eaters came out on top in an 8-5 victory over the Long Beach State 49ers. The Anteaters’ record now improves to 22-6 overall and 5-0 for conference games. Although the ’Eaters did not shoot particularly well, they were still victorious.
Slow and steady is not an exactly the term one would use to describe the ’Eaters at the brink of the game. Within the first two minutes of the first quarter, the ’Eaters found themselves up 3-0 thanks to senior Katie Croghan and junior Kelsey Klatt. Senior Croghan contributed one goal while Klatt contributed a pair of goals.
The 49ers would not end the quarter with a goose egg on the scoreboard, though. By the end of the first quarter, the ’Eaters lead had shrunk to 3-2. The ’Eaters went into the second quarter hoping to defend their home turf.
However, the second quarter was not nearly as productive as the first quarter. The ’Eaters and the 49ers each took multiple shot attempts, but neither team seemed to successfully find the goal. Junior Jessy Cardey had the opportunity to extend their lead with a penalty shot but was unsuccessful. The ’Eaters would end the half still ahead 3-2.
“We just didn’t shoot well today,” head coach Dan Klatt said. “We had a lot of opportunities but we shot poorly so the game stayed closer than it needed to be.”
The ’Eaters came out strong at the beginning of the second half. Sophomore Danielle Ward ended Irvine’s cold spell with a goal less than two minutes into the half. Cardey was presented a chance to redeem herself with another penalty shot which proved successful. With a little over two minutes into the third quarter, the Eaters found themselves ahead 5-2. The 49ers would not go down without a fight though, adding a goal of their own. Senior Croghan then scored another goal to extend their lead to 6-3 by the end of the third quarter.
In the final quarter, the Anteaters established their dominance. Sophomore Hannah Croghan contributed a goal and acquired a crucial steal in the following play. Senior Croghan scored her third goal of the game putting the ’Eaters in a comfortable 8-3 lead. With the clock winding down, the 49ers managed to score two more additional goals, but they couldn’t close the gap, giving Irvine the victory.
The Anteaters now look to play in the Big West Tournament. The ‘Eaters do have the advantage of holding the No. 1 seed; therefore they have a bye their first game. This gives them the opportunity to scope out the competition.
“We need to have more of a killer instinct for next week,” Coach Klatt said. “Today we created, but we didn’t finish.”
The ‘Eaters’ first game for the Big West Conference will be on Saturday, April 28 at UC Davis. They will play the winner of the Long Beach State versus Cal State Northridge game.