The Gonzaga Bulldogs women's soccer team faced the University of San Francisco Dons Saturday night at Luger Field, where the game finished in a 3-3 tie.
Coming into the West Coast Conference matchup, the Bulldogs had won their first two games of the WCC season after beating USD 6-0 and LMU 1-0. The Zags were looking to extend their winning streak to three, as the Dons were looking to rebound from their 1-0 loss to LMU Wednesday.
The Zags got off to a hot start as senior Samantha Heilman chipped past the USF goalkeeper and scored only 3 minutes into the game. However, Heilman would get injured on the play with what looked to be a knee injury.
After a header of the crossbar from the Dons, USF midfielder Samantha Jehnings turned on her left foot past GU defender Haley Archuleta and struck the ball into the back of the net, tying the score at 1 apiece only 12 minutes after Hellman's goal. 3 minutes later, another left-footed finish from freshman Keely Roy increased the Dons' lead to 2-1.
Physicality and intensity were the major dictators of the match, as constant 50/50 tackles were prevalent. The back-and-forth action would be sustained through the end of both halves, and even though the Bulldogs had more chances on goal than the Dons, they would go into halftime down 2-1. Head coach Chris Watkins said he liked the fight and intensity that was displayed throughout the game.
“Both teams really went hard and played their hearts out tonight,” Watkins said. “Everybody really fought, and it made for an exciting game.”
The Dons got off to a strong start to the second half when Roy receieved a cross from Miciah Madison and headed it to the back post and scored, increasing the lead to 3-1 only 2 minutes into the second half.
The preceding 10 minutes after Roy’s second goal consisted of a variety of direct passes from the back and midfield, with the continued physicality and intensity showing, as GU junior Maggie Conners fell in the box and a penalty was not called.
In the 58th minute, GU reshirt senior India Jencks and sophomore Payton Stiles played back-and-forth passing along the left side until Stiles cut into the box and drew a penalty. Senior forward Madeline Gotta converted the penalty and brought the Zags one goal closer to tying the game.
In the 85th minute, Jencks drove in a corner kick that freshman Lauren Elwer headed into the goal, tying up the game at 3 goals a piece. After a giveaway from senior Sophia Viviano, she tracked her run back and won the ball, and soon after, the whistle blew and the game headed into overtime. Stiles would also sustain an injury and have to be carried off the field during the first overtime period before the Zags had a goal-line clearance from a Dons corner kick.
After an acrobatic save by the USF goalkeeper Olivia Camera, the game would finish on a 3-3 tie. The Bulldogs now have 7 points, good for first place in the WCC with Santa Clara. They now look to get back in the win column against Pepperdine in their next game.
“Pepperdine is a really good team, especially because we will be playing them at their home,” Jencks said. “It’ll be a hard game but I think we just have to prepare and we will be ready to go.”
The Zags will face the Waves in Malibu, Calif. Oct. 19 at 1 p.m.