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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Soccer beats Sun Devils for first time

    ASU forward forward Carla Scanniello (7) and UA defender Savanah Levake fight for an airborne ball in a 2-1 Wildcat win in Tempe on Friday.
    ASU forward forward Carla Scanniello (7) and UA defender Savanah Levake fight for an airborne ball in a 2-1 Wildcat win in Tempe on Friday.

    While ASU soccer players slowly walked off the field Friday night in Tempe, the Arizona players rushed onto it.

    Following a dramatic game-winning goal by midfielder Karina Camacho in a 2-1 double overtime thriller, the Wildcats’ bench erupted onto the field and sprinted toward the sophomore hero who had finally given the program one thing it desperately needed: a win against the Sun Devils.

    In the midst of the hugs and jubilation, the team broke out into an exuberant rendition of “”Bear Down Arizona,”” putting to rest all the criticism and the burden of carrying its previous 0-12-1 record against ASU.

    “”This was a huge deal to finally beat them (Friday) night,”” said midfielder Alex Davis. “”Coming to Arizona, we all knew we hadn’t beaten (ASU) before so we’ve always (been) gunning for them. But we really hadn’t ever played as well as we could (against ASU), and Friday we did. It is a great feeling to finally beat them.””

    Early on in the contest, it appeared Arizona (8-4-0, 1-0 Pacific 10 Conference) was on its way to a similar fate at the hands of the Sun Devils. (6-3-3, 0-1). The Wildcats found themselves down 1-0 for the majority of the game and were being outshot by ASU 12-7 going to the half.

    But in the second half, Arizona’s play changed and gave them the determination of a team desperate for a win 13 years in the making.

    After holding the Sun Devils scoreless in the second period despite six ASU shots, UA forward London King finally put the Wildcats on the board after taking a cross from forward Jacqueline Broussard and punching in past ASU’s Briana Silvestri into the net. The goal was King’s fourth of the season.

    “”That goal was huge for our momentum,”” Davis said. “”All of our heart and the passion started coming out throughout the second half and into overtime.

    “”I was really proud of the girls just because everyone stuck it out and everyone started playing really well,”” Davis added. “”We knew we weren’t going to lose that game.””

    Once the game entered the extra minutes, Arizona dominated and prevented ASU from taking any shots the rest of the way. Meanwhile, the Wildcats went on the attack with five total shots in the two overtime periods.

    The aggression paid off when, after 15 extra minutes of play, Arizona caught a break.

    Forward Renae Cuellar took a shot that ricocheted off the post right to Camacho, who knocked the ball over Silvestri and into the net, giving way to a wave of excitement from the Arizona bench.

    “”(Cuellar’s shot) looked like it was going to hit the crossbar so I decided to run into the box and try to follow it up just in case it bounced out and it actually did,”” Camacho said. “”I honestly really couldn’t believe that we actually scored and won in overtime to beat ASU for the first time.

    “”It was a great environment with our whole team there, even our injured players, and our fans,”” Camacho added. “”It was just a really good feeling.””

    In addition to putting an end to Arizona’s long struggle against the Sun Devils, Friday’s win gave Arizona their 100th victory for the program. It also came on the Wildcats’ record-breaking third overtime win of the season.

    But most importantly for Arizona, the win gave the Wildcats a 1-0 record in the Pac-10 – a notable advantage considering the strength of the conference as a whole.

    “”I think (the win) gives us a lot of momentum going into the Pac-10,”” Camacho said. “”We have some tough teams coming up, (and) being able to get a strong, emotional win like we did (against ASU) – that will really help us out as we go on with the rest of our season.””

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