Sept. 21, 2013
LONG BEACH - The Long Beach State women's soccer team made a statement on Saturday night as it defeated 11th-ranked and 2012 NCAA Elite Eight participant BYU, 1-0, in front of 1,082 fans at George Allen Field.
The win was the 49ers' second of the season over a ranked team as they also beat then No. 23 Texas Tech on Sept. 1. In addition, LBSU handed the Cougars just their second loss of the year and fourth in their last 32 outings (dating back to 2011).
Long Beach State, which has won five of its last six, improved to 5-3-0, while BYU dropped to 5-2-1.
Freshman Mimi Rangel scored the lone goal early in the first half and the 49er defense held strong the rest of the way. Sophomore goalkeeper Kaci McCain led that effort with three saves, including a huge stop with 3:30 left in regulation. It was McCain's second shutout of the season.
Junior Taylor Nelson also anchored the back line making some key plays that kept the Cougars' offense out of sync.
LBSU totaled seven shots, including five on frame. Rangel and freshman Hannah Reed finished with two apiece.
In the 14th minute, sophomore Hannah Sanders sent a through pass to senior Eileen Maes, who was able to beat an oncoming BYU goalkeeper to the ball, but she was taken down in a collision at the top of the box, and Long Beach State was awarded a free kick. From the middle and just outside the 18-yard line, Rangel proceeded to deliver a perfect shot that went over a five-person Cougar wall and curled into the upper right corner at the 13:24 mark. It was Rangel's third goal of the season and her second game-winner.
The 49ers held onto the momentum for the rest of the period, finishing the half with a 5-to-2 advantage in shot attempts.
The second period was more of a back-and-forth affair, but BYU started to apply pressure late in the game. That is when McCain stepped up with a huge stop in the 87th minute. Colette Jepson Smith had an open look inside the box and drilled a shot that was headed to the far post, but McCain made a diving save, knocking the ball out of harm's way.
BYU compiled nine shots, but only three were on goal. Jepson Smith and Ashley Hatch led the team with three attempts each.
LBSU set a season high for attendance with 1,082 fans. It was also the third-largest home crowd in program history.
Long Beach State returns to George Allen Field on Thursday, Sept. 26, when it entertains San Francisco at 6 p.m. (PDT).
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