Author: Alex Nieves
Playing in 110-minute matches probably feels typical by now for the Occidental women’s soccer team.
Senior Taylor Renshaw manufactured a standout performance in goal and was supported by the back four as the Tigers were able to sneak out a scoreless double-overtime draw against SCAIC-rival Redlands on Wednesday at Patterson Field. The contest marked the squads’ sixth overtime game in just 10 matches so far this season.
The ball was sailing at Renshaw all night, with the Redlands attack peppering the goalie with a total of 17 shots (seven on goal). Physical play from junior defenders Stephanie Welty and Abigail Mitchell, however, forced many of the shots to come from a distance and posed little threat to Renshaw.
The moment of the night came with just three minutes left to play. Bulldog forward Erin Lau (first-year) ripped a hard shot to the left side of the goal that seemed destined to fly past the keeper. As the ball approached the net, the crowed gasped and Renshaw dove to her right, punching the ball just wide of the net and saving the game for her team.
Redlands consistently had its best looks on a total of 11 corner kicks. Each time, the ball bounced around in the Tiger box before Renshaw would scoop it up or an Occidental defender would take control.
On offense, forwards Julie Khil (first-year) and Michael Tsuha (sophomore) were able to make a few long runs up the flanks of the Bulldog defense, helped along by the passing of midfielder Katie McDonald (junior). However, the Tigers couldn’t quite get a clean look on goal, forcing the opposing keeper to make just two saves.
Occidental head coach Colm McFeely praised his offensive players for their persistence but said that they need to be more aggressive when finishing.
“I think we have to learn to take more shots,” McFeely said. “We’re probably looking for the perfect shot and we need to be prepared to take things that are half-chances on occasion.”
The Tigers are back on the pitch on Oct. 12, traveling to Whittier for a 7 p.m. matchup.
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