Over the weekend, Cal women’s soccer disappointed as the team completed their matches against Oregon and Oregon State without a single win.
Earlier in the season, the blue and gold came out on top against both Oregon State and Oregon, winning by scores of 3-1 and 1-0, respectively. While most teams were rusty due to the long, pandemic-induced break from competition, the Bears already appeared to be in midseason form. However, it seems that their competitors have now shaken off the rust.
Cal faced Oregon and Oregon State at home and was eager to defend home turf. On Friday, the Bears dropped to a 2-3-0 in the Pac-12 after a 1-0 loss to the Ducks. Oregon started off strong, taking a lead in the seventh minute with an early goal that ended up being the decisive one.
The lone goal of the match came off the foot of the Ducks’ Chai Cortez, who found the back of the net with a corner kick. For the remainder of the game, the Bears’ offense fought to equalize the score, but ultimately came up short.
In its efforts to scale the field, Cal was able to secure a few corners but could not convert those into goals. The Bears found a second wind during the last fifteen minutes of the game, putting three shots on goal. However, the Ducks’ Leah Freeman — a Berkeley native — made three stunning saves, keeping Cal under Oregon starting from the seventh minute.
The blue and gold made a last-ditch attempt just eight seconds before regulation concluded. The Bears earned a free kick, and while Maya Evans did successfully move the ball to the last third, a last-minute goal was not in the cards.
Cal sought to avenge this loss in the next day’s matchup against Oregon State on Sunday afternoon. In spite of grueling efforts from both sides, the game ended scoreless despite going into double overtime. The Bears outshot the Beavers 20-11, but none of these shots amounted to anything.
The first overtime period was mostly played in the middle of the field. Both teams seemed to move with more purpose in the second period, wanting to end the game with a win. Cal came out swinging, but Bridgette Skiba, the Oregon State goalkeeper, had a strong performance, and the Bears were never able to get a shot past her.
“We are really proud of the players for the way they played today. We must credit Oregon State for a very gritty performance,” said head coach Neil McGuire.
Cal will now go on the road to face off against Arizona State in Tempe, Arizona, and Arizona this week. In these matchups, the Bears will look to come back from their winless weekend against the Ducks and Beavers.
Maria Khan covers women’s soccer. Contact her at email@example.com.