Nov. 6, 2011
FRESNO, Calif. - Fresno State dropped a heartbreaker in the 2011 Western Athletic Conference soccer tournament Sunday afternoon. The host team gave up a late goal to Utah State and fell 1-0 in the title match.
This was the Bulldogs sixth championship match appearance in seven years. They are 2-3-2 all-time in title matches and 3-1 against Utah State in the WAC tournament.
Both teams remained scoreless at the break with the Bulldogs outshooting Utah State 8-2, 4-0 on goal.
Hancock missed a chance to put the 'Dogs up in the 50th minute after slipping in behind the defensive line. One-on-one with the goalie on the right side, she chipped the ball wide right.
With seven minutes left in the match, Jade Tarver picked up a crossed through pass from Shantel Flanary just outside the box on the left. Sophomore Lauren Lindstrom caught up, but Tarver cut back just enough to get a shot off. The ball slipped past freshman goalkeeper Katie DeVault and into the far right side for the gamewinning goal.
Fresno State (11-5-5, 4-1-2 WAC) continued to press into the final seconds but were unable to answer. The Bulldogs dominated the match on paper outshooting Utah State 15-5 (5-1 on goal) and earning more corners (6-1).
The season ended for the Bulldogs with multiple records set. Fresno State set single-season program records for assists (36) and fewest home losses (0) as well as most number of student-athletes to earn weekly awards from the conference (7). Individuals etching their name in Bulldog history this year included Nizzoli, junior Callie Hancock and DeVault.
Nizzoli broke the single-season assists record (10) and moved to fifth on the all-time career assists list and 10th on the all-time shots list (107).
Hancock set a single-season record for shots on goal (37) and moved into a tie for ninth place on the all-time career goals list and sits alone at ninth on the all-time career shots (115) list. She finished the season with 33 career points, putting her two points away from breaking into the all-time career points leaderboard.
After a breakout freshman year, DeVault is fifth on the career shutouts list (7) and sixth on career saves with 106. She also set the single-match record for saves (12) against Louisiana Tech on Oct. 21.
The Fresno State defense held opponents to one or less goals 15 times this year, earning 10 shutouts. The Bulldogs leave the WAC 17-13-2 all-time at the tournament.
"We Are Your Team!" You can stay connected with Fresno State Athletics on Facebook (fresnostateathletics) and Twitter (@FSAthletics).
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