SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Sacramento State held a commanding 20-2 shot advantage and redshirt freshman Jennifer Lum scored her first collegiate goal as the Hornets topped Fresno Pacific, 1-0, on Wednesday afternoon at Hornet Field.
The Hornets won their second consecutive match by a 1-0 score to even their season record at 3-3-0 while Fresno Pacific, in its final season transitioning to NCAA Division-II, moved to 1-2-0.
"We held possession for most of the game but the challenge was breaking down a packed-in defense," Sacramento State head coach Randy Dedini said. "We got the goal so I'm happy about that and we kept possession for 85% of the game so that was good, but we need to learn how to beat packed-in defenses. There was a little bit of a lack of urgency, especially when we got a goal, so that part was disappointing, but we're still improving as a team and this is a new challenge for us."
The Sunbirds spent most of the game on their half of the field, allowing Sacramento State to maintain possession but limiting its ability to get clean looks on net. The Hornets did have 10 shots in each half but were held to seven total shots on net. By contrast Fresno Pacific managed only two shots but put both tries on frame.
A slow first half saw its first good scoring chance in the 16th minute when Hornet junior Jessica Small had a try hit the crossbar. Sacramento State peppered the Sunbird goal in the following minutes but goalkeeper Sarah King made three saves over the ensuing 11 minutes.
Fresno Pacific had its best scoring chance in the 32nd minute as senior Ashley Tallon had a shot pushed off the crossbar and out of play by Hornet goalkeeper Kimberly Mata. The save led to the Sunbirds only corner kick of the match but the visitors could not convert that opportunity into a shot.
Sacramento State broke through in the 43rd minute as senior Raylene Larot sent a pass to Lum just inside the Sunbird box. The Folsom native turned and drilled a shot off the bottom of the crossbar and over the goal line to give the Hornets the halftime lead.
King would make three saves in the second half to keep her team within a one-goal deficit but the Sunbirds could not mount any significant scoring threats. Mata stopped the visitor's only shot in the half on an easy save on a long-range try in the 67th minute as the Hornets held on for the win.
Mata recorded her second consecutive shutout to move into a tie for second in the Big Sky in that category. Larot tallied an assist for the second consecutive game while Lum led all players with seven shots, a team season-high, while placing two tries on net and scoring the first goal of her career.
"It felt good but it was a teamwork thing," she said. "I was kind of shocked because it was my first goal but I was really happy. I still think we have a lot of work to do but its good to get our record back even so we can start fresh."
Lum and the Hornets will play at Nevada on Sunday at 4 p.m. before returning home to host Fresno State next week.