Junior Kiana Palacios Carries ‘Eaters Past Broncos, 1-0
With three straight wins under their belt, the UC Irvine women’s soccer team (4-0-0) made it four on Sunday when they successfully fended off host Boise State in Idaho, 1-0.
Junior forward Kiana Palacios locked in UCI’s conquest for the fourth when she propelled a shot home in extra time, the second for ‘Eaters this year, off a feed from redshirt senior Kelsey Texeira.
The goal marks the fourth for Palacios on the season, while Texeira stamped in her second assist of the season.
Opening the match, the ‘Eaters got off to a start that played out similarly to their game against San Jose State on Friday in which they managed to garnered a few decent looks at the net but without a single shot landing on the mark.
Boise State’s sophomore midfielder Addison Standlee came the closest of all players to score in the first half with a shot in the 21st minute that was challenged and recovered by UCI freshman keeper Maddie Newsom.
Boise State jumped out and turned up the pressure in the second half. Within the opening minute, the Broncos powered past UCI’s defense to set up junior midfielder Sarah Taylor for a straight shot on goal. Fortunately, Newsom was there to meet it.
Having cleared two on the evening, Newsom has logged nine saves while conceding three in the season thus far. She recorded her first shutout against Saint Mary’s on August 21st in front of a home crowd.
UCI responded to the Broncos pressure well with four shots on target, two of which came from Palacios. After a quiet first half, Palacios began to the push the tempo, starting with a powerful kick that rocketed into the palms of Broncos’ junior keeper Janelle Flores just a minute after Taylor’s attempt at the ‘Eaters’ net.
Flores would go on to have quite a busy evening with sophomore midfielder Lili Andino and Palacios returning to hound her in the 57th and 58th minutes of the match.
In the 88th, UCI’s freshman midfielder Jessica Miclat had one more go at the Bronco’s keeper before the buzzer rang, bringing the game into extra time.
It was halfway through this first overtime period where Palacios would carry the ‘Eaters home. After recovering a Bronco miscue from way past mid-field, Texeira lined up a seemingly perfect pass that rainbowed up and landed a few yards outside of the Boise State penalty box where Palacios beat two defenders to meet Flores for the third time in the evening.
Staring down the keeper, Palacios sent a shot left, Flores dove right, and the ‘Eaters capped off their stay in Idaho with a 1-0 victory.
Having defeated San Jose State and Boise State, the ‘Eaters have successfully swept their opponents in the Bronco’s Invitational. Texeira was awarded an Attacking MVP nod given her game winning goal just two days prior as well as her game winning assist to Palacios. Newsom was awarded the Defensive MVP title with four total saves in the Invitational play.
However, UCI is not quite done with the Mountain West division, as they will head to Nevada next Thursday in an attempt to make it five straight against the Wolf Pack.