Oregon senior forward Jen Stoltenberg kicked off from midfield to start the Ducks’ first game of the 2010 season, and kicked off the scoring with a powerful shot in the 12th minute in a 2-0 victory over Boise State Friday night.
“I know we all came out ready to win, ready to play hard. We wanted to win,” said Stoltenberg, who climbed into a tie for third place in school history in goals scored. “In the locker room, we didn’t second-guess ourselves. It was like, ‘We’re going to win this match.'”
Stoltenberg, who also assisted on the second goal of the game, led the Ducks with seven shots.
Oregon head coach Tara Erickson said Boise State was a team the Ducks should beat, but she was still pleased with her team’s performance.
“I think we dominated them, and I think they’re a good side,” Erickson said after the match.
The first goal came against the flow of play, as the Broncos had made multiple probing runs in the first 11 minutes. Boise State fired three shots, one of which was saved by Duck goalkeeper Cody Miles.
The momentum shifted after Oregon was awarded a corner kick, which was turned into a goal after midfielder Kelsey Hones crossed to an open Stoltenberg in front of the net.
After the initial goal, which came on Oregon’s first shot of the year, the Ducks outshot the Broncos 19-4 for the rest of the game.
Oregon’s second goal came in the 37th minute, when sophomore midfielder Tahne Apo scored her first collegiate goal. The defense was opened up by Stoltenberg making a run on the right side of the field before crossing to Apo, who put the ball in the back left corner of the net.
“It was probably one of the most exciting moments I’ve had in my life,” Apo said. “Scoring that first goal is invigorating. It feels so great.”
In the second half, the Ducks lacked the cutting edge they had in the first half; Erickson characterized the team’s play as “erratic.”
“I think that we got way too direct, the offside calls disrupted the rhythm and we lost a lot of rhythm in the second half,” Erickson said.
Erickson was pleased with the performance of the defense throughout the match.
“I thought we did a good job of minimizing their shots. We still got turned around a little bit too much with them running at us, and we had to make some last-ditch efforts to save the shots, but we’ll work on getting our proper defensive position from the backside,” Erickson said.
Erickson credited the possession-oriented style of soccer her team played as a reason why Boise State was unable to score.
“When you keep the ball as well as you should, you can obviously limit the other team’s
attack,” Erickson said.
Boise State forward Shannon Saxton led the team with three shots and had one of the Broncos’ three shots on goal. Bronco goalkeeper Liz Ruiz had 10 saves, four of them on Stoltenberg.
“I think their goalkeeper did a really nice job of making saves, reaction saves, on Stoltenberg, on Kelsey Hones,” Erickson said. “If we can make keepers make saves, that’s a positive.”
Ducks use scarves for season tickets
Oregon is selling green and yellow soccer scarves that grant admittance to every home match this season for $40. The scarves are available at the Papé Field gate or on GoDucks.com.