SAN DIEGO, California – In her first career game as an Aggie, Jimena Lopez notched a golden goal in the 94th minute to send Texas A&M to a 1-0 win at Torero Stadium Friday evening.
Lopez gathered the ball 25 yards out and weaved through three defenders before finding a clearing at the edge of the penalty box, left of the arc. She launched a missile to into the right side netting for the game winner 3:39 into the first overtime period.
In the first half, the Aggies’ had several strong scoring opportunities, especially three by Ally Watt, but they were all turned away. In the 22nd minute, Watt had a one-on-one with the keeper after flying by the defense, but Brielle Preece made the save. Preece stonewalled Watt again in the 23rd minute and a defender deflected a follow-up shot by Watt.
It was scoreless at the intermission with Texas A&M owning the margins in shots (10-8) and shots-on-goal (4-2) and the Waves holding a 6-3 edge in corner kicks.
The Aggies owned most of the possession in the second half and it resulted in a 7-2 edge in shots, but to no avail.
Cosette Morché earned her first shutout in goal as an Aggie, recording four saves in the match.
For the contest, Texas A&M owned the advantages in shots (18-10) and shots-on-goal (7-4), and Pepperdine held a slim edge in corner kicks (7-6).
Texas A&M returns to action Sunday when they play the San Diego Toreros on USD’s home pitch at 3:30 pm Central.
TEXAS A&M QUOTES
Head Coach G Guerrieri
On the match...
“That’s was a hard-fought win over a Pepperdine squad that is going to put up a lot of wins in a very good conference. I thought we got stronger and stronger as the match went on. We kept getting good chances in the attack, especially with some terrific opportunities by Ally (Watt), but Pepperdine’s keeper made some great saves and their defense wouldn’t crack. But in overtime Jimena (Lopez) such a great play to get into scoring range and she sent a screamer into the net.”
On Jimena Lopez...
“She has played in some big matches already in her career with Mexico’s youth teams, so she’s not going to shy away from big moments. She gave us an outstanding 94 minutes on the defensive end and came away with the golden goal at the end. She’s a terrific person off the field and a great player on the field. This is a great start for her and I think the 12th Man is really going to watch her play the next four years.”
Freshman Jimena Lopez
On her first career goal...
“I’m so happy about the goal. Everyone did such a great job. I was just the one who put it in at the end. I saw an opening to take the shot, so I took it.”