LA VERNE, CA: A barrage of three early second-half goals within 12 minutes gave La Verne all the muscle it needed to hold on for a 3-1 victory over Pomona-Pitzer in Monday Night SCIAC action.
While the Sagehens' previous three SCIAC contests all resulted in overtime, it was the Leopards (8-2-0, 5-2-0 SCIAC) who decisively took control of the game in the second half en route to moving into a tie for first place in the SCIAC. Goals in the 56th minute off of a corner kick, 67th minute on a top left corner shot, and 68th minute off a penalty kick provided too wide of a margin for Pomona-Pitzer (3-5-2, 3-3-1 SCIAC) to overcome as they received their first SCIAC loss in nearly two weeks.
Junior Scout Pepper provided the lone goal for the Sagehens in 90th minute of the match. Pepper, in his first appearance of the season, made the most out of his minutes on by making key plays on both sides of the field, disrupting a 4-on-2 Leopard attack in the 32nd minute with a clutch tackle to go with his first career goal. Junior Goalkeeper Ben Mitchell totaled four saves to bring his SCIAC –leading mark up to 54 for the season. The match also saw the end to an impressive defensive streak for Pomona-Pitzer as the Sagehens went over 300 minutes without conceding a goal stretching back to the September 19 match against Cal Lutheran.
"We just needed to work harder today" said Head Coach Bill Swartz "they outworked us on the offensive end and the results showed in the score. We've got to do a better job of putting ourselves in better positions defensively and just competing for every ball. There's some things we're going to need to clean up before we get on the pitch Saturday."
The Sagehens will be in action next on Saturday at home against the Caltech Beavers. Kickoff is scheduled for 11 a.m. and coverage for the match will be provided on the Pomona-Pitzer Athletics Website.