Senior goalkeeper Jovani McCaskill collected her 28th career shutout, setting a new CSUN school record in the Matadors’ (8-4-6, 4-1-2 BWC) 0-0 draw at UC Davis (4-10-2, 3-1-2 BWC) on Sunday afternoon at Aggie Soccer Field.
McCaskill registered two saves in net en route to earning her second-straight clean sheet and third over the last four matches. Cynthia Sanchez led both teams with four shots with three on goal while Amy Aquino picked up three shots.
McCaskill’s 28th shutout moved her ahead of assistant coach Cynthia Rosas who had possessed the CSUN career shutout record since 2012. Last season, McCaskill broke the single season shutout record with 14. McCaskill is now tied for fourth all-time in Big West history on the conference’s career shutout list.
“I was a little all over the place after the match. I definitely cried tears of joy after the game,” said McCaskill about her record-breaking accomplishment. “There was a two to three-game stretch during the season where I didn’t think it might happen. I couldn’t be happier to have this moment.
“I’d like to thank my parents,” continued McCaskill. “Even though they haven’t been able to go to all the games, they provide play-by-play through texts during the game. Colleen [Boyd] has been big part of this record and Cynthia [Rosas] has been been a big help over the last two seasons. Having Cynthia there to break down everything for me has been amazing. Of course, if not for Amanda [Martin] Lulu [Kutscher] and Nico [Christina Nixon], I wouldn’t be a record breaker without them this year and last year.”
The Matadors outshot the Aggies 13-9 including 7-2 in shots on goal. CSUN also held a 9-5 edge in corner kicks. However, the Matadors and Aggies would be unable to break through in the scoring column in 110 minutes of action for the third-straight season. The teams have now battled into double overtime in four of their last five meetings.
In the first half, Sanchez quickly took the first shot of the match in the second minute but UC Davis goalkeeper Alexis Smith made one of her seven saves on Sunday on the play. Sanchez and Aquino would also put shots on goal in the 13th minute.
Zuzu Romano had perhaps the best look of the first period when she hit the crossbar in the 16th minute. Moments later, Monet Kunz took a shot that was blocked. The Matadors collected three blocked shots in the half.
In the 59th minute, McCaskill stopped a header from Kunz following a corner kick. On the play, Kunz headed the ball toward the right back post but McCaskill moved to her left, dove and knocked away the shot.
The Matadors came within inches of the net in the 68th minute as Sanchez found room on the break. Corralling a long pass from Marissa Favela, Sanchez sent a chip shot past a charging Smith near the middle of the box. Sanchez’s shot just went wide right keeping the match scoreless.
Sanchez nearly the hit the back of the net once again in the 78th minute off a free kick from 20 yards. Instead, Smith got a hand on the ball and tipped it off the crossbar.
After halftime, the Matadors allowed four total shots with three of them coming in the second half. However, the Matador defense allowed just one attempt after the 64th minute.
Aquino took both of the Matadors’ shots in the first overtime with her second coming on goal. The Matadors withstood two UCD corner kicks in the second overtime including an attempt in the final minute but the defense cleaned up the play as time expired.
Defenders Christina Nixon, Amanda Martin and Lindsay Kutscher along with midfielder Kirsten Von Meter played the full 110 minutes on Sunday.
CSUN heads into its final regular season match atop the Big West with 14 points and could clinch a share of the Big West regular season title with a win to close the season. The Matadors need a win or a UC Riverside tie or loss to clinch a Big West Tournament berth. The Big West Tournament is set to start Thursday, Nov. 2 and all games will be held at Matador Soccer Field.
The Matadors will host Long Beach State on Thursday at 7 p.m. on the CSUN Sports Network presented by Dignity Health. Before the match, the Matadors will honor their senior class in a pre-game ceremony.