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No. 12 WWU soccer upsets No. 3 UC San Diego

Photo: KPUG

No. 12 WWU soccer upsets No. 3 UC San Diego

LA JOLLA, Calif. – Forward Jessica Bertucci (So., Bellingham/Sehome) scored with just over a minute remaining as Western Washington University opened its 2013 season with a 1-0 upset victory over UC San Diego on Saturday in a women’s soccer game between two nationally ranked opponents at Triton Soccer Stadium on the UCSD campus.

Bertucci took a through ball from Stephanie Hamilton (So., Orting/Bellarmine Prep) and deposited a low shot on a sliding finish past the goalkeeper in the 89th minute. Catherine Miles (So., Anacortes) began the sequence with an interception at midfield for the Vikings.

“This group loves playing these kind of games,” said WWU coach Travis Connell (11th year, 122-59-19). “They come to battle. We didn’t play our best tonight, but there was no shortage of effort or commitment … This was a great way to start the season.”

WWU entered the game ranked No.12 nationally in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America/NCAA Division II Preseason Top 25. UCSD, which fell to 1-1, was rated No.3.

WWU had a 12-8 advantage in shots and a 4-2 edge in corner kicks.

Connell praised the play of midfielder Ashton Griffen (Sr., Duvall Cedarcrest). “She had so much energy, it looked like there were two of her out there.”

Goalkeeper Alyssa Beauchamp (Sr., Vancouver/Mountain View), making her first collegiate regular-season appearance, had four saves for the Vikings

The two teams last met at last year’s West Regional championship when UCSD prevailed 2-1 in overtime. The Tritons went on to reach the national title contest.

The win was WWU’s first over UCSD in their series, the Vikings losing five and tying one of the previous six meetings.

The Vikings host Notre Dame de Namur University on Thursday, Sept. 12 (12 noon) at Orca Field on the Whatcom CC campus.

Saturday, Sept. 7, 2013
La Jolla, Calif., Triton Soccer Field, UCSD campus

Western Washington 1, UC San Diego 0

Scoring – 1. WWU, Bertucci (Hamilton), 88:52.
Shots – WWU 14, UCSD 8
Saves – WWU 4 (Beauchamp 4); UCSD 7 (Brodsky 7).
Corner kicks – WWU 4, UCSD 2
Fouls – WWU 12, UCSD 7
Attendance: 206

(www.wwuvikings.com)