The Bears hope to redeem themselves this week against the Washington State Cougars and the Washington Huskies as they defend their home turf at Edwards Stadium. After losing to both of these schools in their past two matchups, the Bears must come ready to compete against these tough opponents.
Cal must remain attentive of Washington forward Summer Yates, who scored the only goal for the Huskies during last year’s matchup. She has played a crucial role in the team’s success thus far, with four goals and six assists under her belt this season. Against the Cougars, however, things might prove a little easier: Luckily for the Bears, the two players who fired shots into Cal’s goal last season no longer form part of the roster.
After pulling off an impressive last-minute win against the Arizona Wildcats with a final score of 1-0, the Bears hope to start up their winning streak once more against the schools hailing from the Pacific Northwest. Sophomore superstar Karlie Lema scored the only goal of the match with four minutes remaining.
The odds do not point in the Bears’ favor as both opponents stand with an overall score of 8-1-2 while the blue and gold find themselves at 6-3-3. Regardless of how Cal’s performance differs from the Cougars and Huskies, the Bears’ roster is made up of some of the best players in Cal history. Goalkeeper Angelina Anderson is currently tied with Cal Hall of Famer Maite Zabala for second on the school’s all-time shutout list. This comes after she added another shutout to her record during Cal’s match against the Wildcats, bringing her shutout count to 24.
Senior Keely Roy continues to be one of Cal’s strongest competitors as she leads the team with five goals and two assists, most recently against the Wildcats. Roy put up an impressive display of footwork as she dribbled the ball in her own half and went past two defenders, passing to Lema and sealing the game with a win for Cal. Earlier in the season, Roy scored a brace against the UC San Diego Tritons, which marked the first time in almost three years that a Bear had scored multiple goals in one game.
Lema is another one of the Bear’s most important players as she follows Roy with three goals and one assist. She stood atop as one of the game leaders in their match against the Cougars last season as she accumulated two shots.
Sophomore Ari Manrique is sure to keep both squads on their paws as she has already outscored her point total from the 2021 season in one week. With two goals and one assist combined during Cal’s matches against UNLV and Penn, she is an invaluable member for the Bears.
A vital part of Cal’s overall performance is due to Cal’s sophomore star Ayo Oke, who gained her fourth assist of the season against No. 1 UCLA. Apart from demonstrating her immense skill as a defender, she has gotten very close to scoring goals during multiple games. She currently leads the team in assists, with Roy and Noelle Bond-Flasza trailing behind with two assists each.
The Bears tend to dominate their matches, nearly outshooting all of their opponents. Against the Huskies last year, this proved to be true: Cal almost doubled in shots against the Huskies 14-8. Against the Cougars, however, Cal fell behind as the Cougars dominated 11-6 last year.
Will the Bears be able to turn around the outcome of these games, or will they fall once more into the claws of their opponents? Find out for yourself as Cal takes on the Cougars on Oct. 6, followed by the Huskies’ matchup Oct. 9.