Women’s soccer team shuts out Aztecs

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    By Shannon McOmber

    With a little luck and a boost from the Aztecs, the BYU women’s soccer team nabbed an easy 4-0 win.

    The Cougars took a landslide victory from one of their most heated rivals Thursday night shutting out San Diego State.

    The Cougars defeated the Aztecs last year for the Mountain West Championship title.

    The game came full circle during the 82nd minute of play when Jennie Christianson headed Lydia Ojuka’s assist into the net, scoring the final goal of the game.

    Christianson was also responsible for the second goal on the board, but not without some help from the Aztecs. Christianson’s kick was unintentionally knocked into the goal by a San Diego State defender.

    She’s not complaining.

    “Sometimes the ball just bounces in your direction,” Christianson said. “It just happened to bounce my way. I got lucky.”

    But luck counts on the scoreboard.

    BYU’s Aleisha Cramer also benefited off what appeared to be a lucky shot.

    Despite the mass of players surrounding her, Cramer turned and booted a loose ball into the net as though she were the only one on the field.

    Cramer’s goal was the first one of the night, and it didn’t show up until 23 minutes into the game.

    Despite their two goals, the Cougars had a rough first half, struggling to connect with the ball and with each other.

    “Even though we dominated the whole game, the first half was a struggle,” said Cougar defender Staci Reynolds. “We expected San Diego to come out much stronger than they did, so we weren’t playing quick or smart. We were just trying to play.”

    Reynolds saw only second-half action as well since recovering from a concussion received after a blow to the head in the University of Utah game last Saturday.

    But Reynolds and the Cougars came on strong during the second half.

    “We had too many turnovers and weren’t playing with much inspiration during the first half, but we got back on track,” head coach Jennifer Rockwood said.

    But to look at the scoreboard, one would never know the Cougars were off track in the first place.

    The lack of competition from San Diego State took the Cougars by surprise, as an Aztec win has always been a battle for BYU.

    “They have always been a rival team for us — a team we’ve struggled against for every win, but we put forth a great team effort tonight and worked the ball very well,” Rockwood said.

    BYU improved to 11-3-1 overall and 3-0 in the conference.

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