March 27, 2011

Cal Throttles Villanova, Improves to 8-4

from press release

VILLANOVA, Pa. -- California scored the first 11 goals of the game en route to an 11-2 thrashing of Villanova on Sunday at Villanova Stadium. Megan Takacs (2 goals, 1 assist), Alexa Rozelle (2 goals, 1 assist) and Tara Arolla (1 goal, 2 assist) led the Golden Bears with three points each. The Bears, who have won three straight, finished with a 3-1 record on their spring break road trip and an 8-4 record overall after whipping the Wildcats in the nonconference match. They now have a 3-0 advantage in the all-time series with Villanova, which dropped to 4-4 on the season.

"It was a great game from the beginning," Cal head coach Theresa Sherry said. "We did great on draw controls, the attack was in synch, the defense made great stops and we were causing turnovers all over the field. I was really happy with the entire team effort. It was really fun for everyone to watch today. It's good for us to end our trip on such a positive note."

This marks Cal's most lopsided win since its 20-11 drubbing of Saint Mary's in last season's MPS Tournament.

The Bears shut out Villanova, 9-0, in the first half, with Rozelle collecting the eventual game-winning goal with her eight-meter goal at 6:58 in the first half. Six different Bears scored in the first 30 minutes, with Rozelle, Takacs and sophomore midfielder Melissa Humphrey (2 goals) scoring all their goals before halftime. Freshman midfielder Paige Gasparino, junior midfielder Vail Horn and junior attacker Tara Arolla, who notched an eight-meter goal with one second left before halftime, also scored for the Bears.

Freshman midfielder Amelia Burke (47:53) and sophomore attacker Gina Holslag (51:01) scored the first two goals of the second stanza to make the score 11-0. The Wildcats scored the last two goals of the game for the final 11-2 scoreline.

The Bears outshot Villanova, 21-17, for the game, dominating the first half with a 16-4 shots advantage. The Wildcats forced starting Cal senior goalkeeper Allie Shropshire to make just one save. Freshman goalie Megan McGinnis played the second half, when 'Nova outshot Cal, 13-5. McGinnis wound up with eight saves.

"We were trying to control the tempo," Sherry said of the second half. "We were a little bit sloppy at the start of the second half - their defense was a little bit more aggressive - and we were getting people in and out of the game. They really tightened up their defense and made it a little bit it harder for us to take open opportunities."

Cal surpassed Villanova in ground balls, 16-9, and draw controls, 8-6, and converted three of four eight-meter shots, while 'Nova missed all five of its eight-meter shots.

"Tara did a good job leading us today, control tempo, dishing it off and she kept possession for us," Sherry added. "Chippy [Burke] did good job on possession as well. It was a very balanced effort. The whole team played outstanding. It was really exciting to watch."

The Bears return to action and to the San Francisco Bay Area when they travel to the peninsula to battle rival and seventh-ranked Stanford at 7 p.m. on Friday, April 1.

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