Krystal Sandza and the UCSB women’s soccer team enjoyed a solid tear over the weekend.
The sophomore midfielder from Poway, Calif. kicked her way into the Gaucho record books Sunday with five goals while leading the Gauchos to a lopsided 8-1 victory over the United States Air Force Academy. Sandza also scored the only two goals en route to a 2-0 win over Colorado College on Friday.
“Games like these just give us all sorts of confidence,” UCSB Head Coach Paul Stumpf said.
Santa Barbara, whose record now stands at 7-3-1, opened the scoring against Air Force with two goals in the first 2:18 of the game. After sophomore forward Erin Griswold scored on an assist from junior Alma Martinez in the game’s first 55 seconds, sophomore Jen Borcich nailed home the first of her two goals less than two minutes later.
Then Sandza scored the Gaucho’s next five goals.
The celebrations did not get started until Sandza scored her record-breaking fifth goal. Borcich, who was not playing when Sandza scored her third and fourth goals, was on the field for the record-breaker.
“I got to be on the field when she scored her fifth. I hugged her and carried her about ten yards,” Borcich said. “It was awesome.”
The previous record of four goals in one game was held by eight different players and had not been reached since 1987 by Diane Manore. Karen Jennings, retired U.S. Women’s World Cup member and one of the most heralded UCSB women’s soccer alumnae, hit the mark three times during her career as a Gaucho.
On Friday, Sandza started the scoring in the second half with assists from Borcich and Griswold. She delivered the finishing blow to Colorado in the game’s final two minutes on a cross-field pass from junior forward Alex Richey.
“Everyone was on the right side and Alex had the ball,” Sandza said. “I was on the left and called for it, and she passed it and I put it in.”
Freshman goalkeeper Jamie Considine tallied seven saves in the weekend’s two matches and allowed only one goal in just under 164 minutes played. Considine recorded her fifth shutout of the season on Friday.
The Gauchos received an off-day yesterday after the weekend trip to the mile-high air of Colorado. Battling the thin air was not something most players were used to.
“We were a little nervous about the altitude,” Borcich said. “It wasn’t too bad. But for the first twenty minutes we were struggling.”
The only regrets from the weekend were injuries to senior midfielder Erica Perrotta, senior defender Katie Wilson and freshman midfielder Kristyn Bright. Perrotta, who dislocated her kneecap a week ago, will likely miss the rest of the season, according to Stumpf.
Despite the injuries and the high altitude, the Gaucho coach described the trip as a “great weekend.”
“Take soccer away and we’re fortunate to have a great group of student athletes,” Stumpf said. “It was a good, fun weekend that will help build team unity.”