By Andrew Gordo
Over the weekend, Cal Poly Pomona women’s soccer team not only earned a playoff berth in this year’s conference playoffs, but also set a new school record with their sixth straight shutout.
The school record for shutouts was previously held by the 1999 team and stood for 15 years, while this playoff berth is the latest since the Broncos last qualification in 2012.
With a 2-0 win against the Humboldt State Lumberjacks on Friday, and a thrilling 1-0 win against the 15th ranked Sonoma State Seawolves on Sunday, the Broncos improved their overall record to 12-4, their conference record to 7-3 and extended their win streak.
In Friday’s matchup against the Lumberjacks, the Broncos dominated both sides of the ball. On offense, the Broncos got off 10 shots with four on goal, as two of them found the back of the net. While on defense, the Broncos held the Seawolves to only four shots with one on goal, and did not allow a single score.
The scoring opened up for the Broncos in the 11th minute, when senior midfielder Alison Sauve scored her fourth goal of the season with an assist by senior midfielder Indra Arteaga.
The Broncos struck again in the 25th minute, when junior forward Melissa Martinez scored her fifth goal of the season from 25 yards, again coming off an assist from Arteaga.
“I’m very pleased, the girls are starting [off] the games well, said head coach Mike Dibbini after the win. “[They are] taking care of business early on and managing the rest of the game.”
“As long as they defend together the offense will come,” said Dibbini on his team’s defense. “The focus is just defending together, looking to attack at the right moments. I think overall the team works well together on the defensive side.”
The Bronco’s defense came up big against the Seawolves on Sunday in a close matchup.
At the half, neither team was able to gain an advantage and the score remained 0-0. Both defenses played well in the first half, as the Broncos’ defense only allowed the Seawolves to get off four shots. The Seawolves allowed the Broncos three shots.
The second half wasn’t much different, as the Broncos’ defense only allowed six shots and the Seawolves’ defense allowed five. However, the Broncos were able to convert one of their second half shots, making the difference.
In the 73rd minute, junior defender Rachel Killigrew connected on free kick from 20 yards out coming off of a Seawolves foul. It was her second goal of the season, both coming off of free kicks. This goal cemented the victory for the Broncos, as the defense secured a record sixth consecutive shutout.
“Leadership is the key,” said Dibbini when speaking about how to prepare his team for upcoming games. “As long as they stay sharp, stay focused, and stay disciplined, I think those barriers will help us achieve what we are trying to achieve. We’re going in one game at a time and worrying about us only.”
The Broncos look to end their regular season on a high note on Thursday when they face Cal State Los Angeles at home for Senior Night.
Courtesy Matt Brown / Bronco Athletics
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