EL CAJON, Calif. - Eighth-ranked women's soccer has come together to chronicle a special season in the Vanguard record books. On Wednesday afternoon the Pride bested Golden State Athletic Conference opponent San Diego Christian 9-0 to secure its ninth consecutive win. All nine of the triumphs have occurred in league play, earning the 2012 Blue and Gold team the record for the most GSAC victories in the program's history.
The previous mark, held by the 2001 Vanguard women's soccer squad, was seven. The Pride are one conquest away from being the program's winningest team ever. With 13 overall wins, the 2012 Lions have tied the standard set by VU's 1997, 2006 and 2009 teams.
Vanguard took a very early lead in the first half of its match with San Diego Christian. In the second minute, freshman Ashley McCutcheon (Aliso Viejo, Calif.) rebounded a just-miss off of the crossbar by senior Rachel Rucireta (Yorba Linda, Calif.) to post her fourth score of the year.
Next to score was senior Lindsey Holman-Kelley (La Jolla, Calif.) who received a gift in the box from classmate Charlotte Wisniewski (Aliso Viejo, Calif.) which she was able to blast by the Hawk's Sandra Castro at 13:57 to give the Lions a 2-0 advantage.
Two minutes later, another fourth-year found the back of the net for the Blue and Gold. Amanda Couch (Fair Oaks, Calif.) launched a 20-yard free kick that had purpose, and succeeded in putting Vanguard up by a trio of points.
Junior Jordan Davidson (Tucson, Ariz.) was the mastermind behind Vanguard's fourth score, as she assisted Holman-Kelley on finding the back of the net for the second time at the 23:03 mark on a crossed ball.
The duo stuck together to post another goal in similar fashion just four minutes later. Holman-Kelley hit the hat-trick for the first time in her Vanguard career, becoming the second Lions' player in two games to tally the ‘trick in a single half. Holman-Kelley's three scores took just 13:47.
Following suit with her classmates, Lauren Skachenko (Chino Hills, Calif.) posted two of her own at 29:39 and 32:58 to give the Lions a 7-0 edge headed into the break. Her first was unassisted and the second was courtesy of junior Kayla Arenas (Fullerton, Calif.).
San Diego Christian picked up its intensity in the second 45:00 but VU was able to manage two more before the final horn sounded. Couch and sophomore goalkeeper Paige Sikes (La Palma, Calif.) registered the double-assist to Davidson, who netted her conference-leading 13th goal of the season just after the 59th minute ticked by.
The Lions' ninth and final tally belonged to Arenas. Skachenko repaid her teammates' earlier generosity at 84:00, when she set Arenas up on the breakaway. Arenas took off down the field and shot the ball by the Hawk's goalie Emily Wilson, who had subbed in for Castro at 68:50.
Vanguard outshot San Diego Christian 25-2 in the match. Both of the Hawk's shots were on goal, but Sikes, who came in at the beginning of the second half for Vanguard secured saves on both attempts.
Thirteen different Lions have scored in 2012 and ten of them boast at least two goals. The prolific Vanguard offense has posted 50 scores on the season and the lockdown defense has held opponents to just six. The shutout win over San Diego Christian was the 11th time that VU has zeroed an opponent this year.
Sophomore goaltender Lauren Terry (Corona, Calif.), who is 10-2 on the season and who has garnered all nine of the Pride's GSAC wins, owns five of the shutouts.
"After overcoming my quad injury the past couple of months, it was a great feeling to contribute to my team's success today," Holman-Kelley said. "Our team chemistry on and off of the field shows in our results and now we have to get prepared for Saturday's big game."
Securing the record-breaking 14th win will be no simple feat, as the Lions host No. 12 Westmont (12-3-1 / 8-1 GSAC) on Oct. 27th at 4:00pm. The contest will decide the 2012 GSAC Champion. Vanguard women's soccer has never won a conference championship.