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October 17, 2010

Women’s Soccer Remains Unbeaten in Big Sky, Tops Portland State 2-0

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. – Junior goalkeeper Tori Rocke made a season-high seven saves for her sixth shutout of the year and Northern Arizona got a pair of goals from senior Brandy Carr and junior Jenna Samora in a three minute stretch midway through the second half to give the Lumberjacks a 2-0 win over Portland State. Northern Arizona extended its unbeaten streak to eight games, improving to 8-3-3 overall and a Big Sky-leading 3-0-1 in conference while the Vikings now stand at 6-9-1 overall and 2-2-0 in the Big Sky.

"We new this would be a tough game, as Portland State has played us really close over the last-three years," said head coach Andre Luciano. "I thought our team did a great job at halftime making some adjustments. We knew we just had to be patient and with a little perseverance it would pay off in the end."

Both Rocke and Portland State sophomore goalkeeper Lainey Hulsizer were sharp early, as each keeper made three saves in the opening 19 minutes of the contest. NAU came close to a goal in the 25th minute, as senior defender Tori Howe sent a cross to Samora in front of the Viking goal but her shot missed just wide.

Portland State's best chance in the first half came in the 41st minute as senior Emily Rhode had a shot hit the crossbar. Rocke made five first-half saves while Hulsizer totaled four stops as the game went to the half scoreless.

After 16 minutes and 45 seconds had been played in the second half, the game was stopped for several minutes as Portland State sophomore Carlie Martin had to be carried off the field after sustaining an apparent right leg injury.

Nine minutes after the lengthy delay, the Lumberjacks would break the stalemate off a free kick from 25 yards out. Senior Kristi Andreassen played the ball short, with a deflection from senior Sam Monahan finding Carr for an open look from atop the Viking box. The Lumberjack senior fired a perfect shot to the top-right corner of the Portland State goal to put NAU ahead.

After scoring two goals in just one minute and six seconds on Friday, the Lumberjacks would again find a second quick tally on Sunday just 2:52 after Carr's goal. Andreassen attempted another free kick, sending a perfect feed to the left post of the Portland State goal. Samora was there for a diving header past Hulsizer for her third goal of the season and a 2-0 Lumberjack lead.

With a two goal cushion, the NAU defense did not allow a single Portland State shot for the remaining 16 minutes of the contest to maintain a 2-0 victory.

Rocke's season-high seven saves extended her NAU school record to 17 career solo shutouts. Hulsizer finished with seven stops for the Vikings, as NAU held a slim 13-11 shot advantage for the game. Only two corner kicks were attempted in the game (both by NAU) and only seven total fouls were called in the contest, with no fouls being whistled in the first half.

Northern Arizona returns to action next Friday, hosting Montana (2-11-2, 1-3-0 BSC) at 3 p.m. in Lumberjack Stadium.

DID YOU KNOW… The Northern Arizona University athletics department recorded a cumulative grade point average of 3.07 GPA among its more than 300 student-athletes at the completion of the spring semester. It marked the 12th semester out of the last 13 overall that the Lumberjack student-athletes have recorded a 3.00 cumulative GPA or higher. Since 1998, NAU student athletes have earned a 3.0 cumulative GPA or higher in 22 out of 24 semesters.