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October 1, 2010

Rocke Breaks Shutout Record as Soccer Tops San Francisco 1-0

VIDEO: TORI ROCKE TALKS ABOUT BREAKING THE NAU SHUTOUT RECORD

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. – Junior Tori Rocke had to make just one save for her NAU record-breaking 14th career solo shutout as senior Brandy Carr's first half goal gave the Lumberjacks a 1-0 win over San Francisco. NAU recorded its fourth-consecutive shutout to end non-conference play at 5-3-2 while San Francisco was held scoreless in its sixth straight game to fall to 4-8-0.

Rocke stopped the only San Francisco shot on goal, coming on a long try from Don junior Megan Connor in the 63rd minute, to notch her fourth consecutive shutout (one shared) and break the previous school record of 13 career solo shutouts held by Liz Winkelblech. The redshirt junior from Garden Grove, Calif. now has 14 career solo shutouts and one shared shutout, establishing a new program record.

The Lumberjacks controlled play for most of the opening half and were able to get a goal off their fifth corner kick of the half in the 34th minute. Senior Brenna Boies took the corner, which would be headed down in the front of the goal and take a high bounce. Senior Sam Monahan got her head on the loose ball, knocking it down to junior Lauren Zallis for a deflection to Carr, who fired a point-blank shot into the USF goal to give the Lumberjacks a 1-0 lead that they would take into halftime.

After being out-shot 10-1 in the first half, the Dons got their best scoring chance of the game in the opening minute of the second half. A loose ball was corralled by USF junior Keonna Robinson to the right of the Lumberjack goal and her shot beat a diving Rocke but hit off the post and was cleared by the NAU defense.

As the second half progressed and Northern Arizona turned its focus to maintaining its slim lead, both teams would only place a single shot on goal in the final 45 minutes. USF freshman Tyler Compagna would attempt two corner kicks in the final 18 seconds of the game as the Dons scrambled to find an equalizer, but NAU held on defensively for the 1-0 win.

"I thought we started out a little flat in the first half, but I thought the last-25 minutes of the half we were able to run them ragged with our possession," said head coach Andre Luciano. "Once we scored that goal we were able to control possession for most of the rest of the half and held them from getting many quality chances in the second half."

"Tori (Rocke) had to deal with some adversity in the beginning of the season, but she was patient waiting for her opportunity," added Luciano about his record-breaking goalkeeper. "She is in a really good rhythm now and it's good for us to have four goalkeepers to push each other. Tori has had a great career so far and she has always stepped up for us in big games."

After the Lumberjacks held a 6-1 advantage in corner kicks in the first half, San Francisco would reverse those numbers in the second half to even the attempts at 7-7 for the game. NAU out-shot USF 17-5 for the game, with San Francisco sophomore goalkeeper Noelle Salter making five saves to keep her team close.

The Lumberjacks open Big Sky play next Thursday, October 7, with a rematch of the 2009 Big Sky Championship Final against Idaho State in Pocatello at 4 p.m.