Sac State women’s soccer team defeats Idaho with overtime goal

Hornet junior midfielder Samantha Craig scores with 44 seconds remaining


Anthony Shorter

Sacramento State junior forward Julia Herrera dribbles downfield against the University of Idaho Friday, Oct. 25 at Hornet Field. The Hornets won in double overtime over the Vandals 1-0.

Vince Castellana

The Sacramento State women’s soccer team (10-1-6, 4-0-4 Big Sky) defeated the University of Idaho (4-12-2, 1-5-2) Friday 1-0 thanks to an overtime game-winning goal by junior midfielder Samantha Craig.

The game was deadlocked at zero throughout regulation and the first half of overtime.

Then in the 110th minute, with only 44 seconds left in the game, Craig scored to give the Hornets the win.

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Craig was so confident that she would capitalize when the moment would come, that she told her teammates that she would win the game.

“I actually called that I was going to get the game-winner in the huddle (before the play),” said Craig.

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Sac State head coach Randy Dedini said he is expecting Craig to bring that confidence and ability to hit game-winners in future matches.

“I didn’t hear (her call the shot), but if she did it, I mean, call it next game too, man,” Dedini said. “Because we love the game-winners.”

With the win Friday, the Hornets tied a Big Sky record with 16 consecutive matches without a loss. Sac State’s only loss this season came in the first match of the season Aug. 23 at rival UC Davis.

However, even though Friday’s game ended in favor of the Hornets, Dedini said he sees areas in which this team needs to improve.

“There wasn’t a great blow to the game,” Dedini said. “We got to do a better job of settling the game and taking control of the ball.”

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Dedini said he hopes to correct some weaknesses before Sac State is set to begin the Big Sky Conference tournament. The Hornets are currently third in Big Sky, three points back of first place, and have already clinched a spot in the tournament.  

Going into the tournament, Dedini said he wants his team to focus more on the process of the matches than the results.

“All year long, we try not to focus on results and focus more on the process,” Dedini said. “Doing all the little things, you know, defending with relentless pressure, moving the ball (and) attacking with intelligence. If we take care of all the little things, winning is the byproduct of all the other things that we do.”

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Hornets junior goalkeeper Aaliyah Fesili explained the importance of not overlooking any team in the Big Sky regardless of record.

“Everyone in the Big Sky is a good team,” Fesili said. “So our mentality is to never treat any team like a record shows, because they’re always better.”

Sac State will begin the Big Sky Conference tournament Nov. 6. The Hornets finish out the regular season on Senior Day Sunday at noon against Eastern Washington University at Hornet Field.