Long Beach State notebook: Women’s soccer is back east this week

LBSU’s Dana Fujikuni falls on CSUN’s Jennifer Anderson after a collision in Long Beach on Friday, August 18, 2017. Long Beach State women’s soccer season opener vs CSU Northridge. (Photo by Scott Varley, Press-Telegram/SCNG)
LBSU’s Dana Fujikuni falls on CSUN’s Jennifer Anderson after a collision in Long Beach on Friday, August 18, 2017. Long Beach State women’s soccer season opener vs CSU Northridge. (Photo by Scott Varley, Press-Telegram/SCNG)

A pair of games on the East Coast this week finishes the nonconference schedule for the Long Beach State women’s soccer team.

The 49ers (4-3-1) visit Connecticut on Thursday before traveling to New York to face St. John’s on Sunday.

LBSU split its games last weekend with a 3-0 win over San Diego and a 2-0 loss at Loyola Marymount. Coach Mauricio Ingrassia picked up his 150th victory as well, but said his takeaway from last week was that his team needs more consistency.

“We need to make more little details into habits across all three lines,” Ingrassia said. “It was more individual errors so we don’t have to overhaul anything, but we’re far from a finished product.”

The loss of senior captain Ashley Gonzales to injury last month has got Ingrassia and his coaching staff shuffling lineups to find the right offensive combination. LBSU has outshot its eight opponents 91-69 this season, and eight different 49ers have scored goals.

Sophomore transfers Katie Pingel and Ayanna Robles are the only players with more than one score. Ingrassia said he’ll try some different shapes in the midfield at UConn to open up the offense.

UConn (2-3-2) won its first two games of the season last weekend. The Huskies are led by Liverpool, England, native Kess Elmore. The freshman forward has scored five of UConn’s eight total goals. The Huskies won the only meeting between the schools, 5-0, the last time LBSU visited Connecticut in 2013.

The game at St. John’s is the first meeting between the schools. St. John’s (4-2-1) is led by junior Christina Bellero who has a team-high four goals and two assists. The Red Storm has given up eight goals this season and three of them were penalty kicks.

LBSU returns to George Allen Field on Oct. 1 to start Big West Conference action against Hawaii.

Men’s water polo

The Aggie Invitational this weekend at UC Davis will be the first big test for LBSU (5-1) after two successful tournament appearances.

The No. 6-ranked 49ers play UC Davis on Saturday morning before facing No. 5 Pacific in the afternoon. The Aggies are ranked No. 9 and lost to LBSU in the season opener two weeks ago, 13-10.

On Sunday, the 49ers play Whittier in the morning before taking on No. 2 USC. The Trojans lead the all-time series 67-22 and LBSU last beat USC in 2000.

Women’s volleyball

The 49ers (1-9) are at Walter Pyramid for three matches this weekend as part of the LBSU/UCI Mizuno Invitational. LBSU takes on No. 11 UCLA (5-2 at 7 p.m. Friday before facing San Francisco and Montana State on Saturday. UCLA is outblocking its opponents 64-45 this season, and has only allowed 16 service aces in 24 sets. The Bruins have won the last six matches with the 49ers and lead the all-time series, 62-24. LBSU last beat UCLA in 2008.

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Men’s golf

LBSU placed third in the Itani Quality Homes Collegiate at Palouse Ridge Golf Club on Tuesday. Redshirt junior Joe Fryer shot a bogey-free round of 67 in the final round to also finish third. The Bristol, England native recorded four birdies and 14 pars.

LBSU had a three-round score of 21-under-par 831. Tournament host Washington State won the title with a 33-under 819. The 49ers travel to Fort Collins, Colorado on Monday for the two-day Ram Masters Intercollegiate.

Cross country

LBSU is in Riverside on Saturday for the UC Riverside Invitational that includes women’s 6K and a men’s 8K. The women race at 7:30 a.m. and the men start at 8:05 a.m.

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About the Author

JJ Fiddler

JJ Fiddler is a sportswriter and videographer who has been covering the Long Beach-area sports world for multiple newspapers since 2004. After attending Long Beach State and creating the first full sports page at the Union Weekly Newspaper, he adopted Long Beach as his home town and is a member of the Long Beach Century Club, where he is a two-time winner of the Keith Cordes Award for best promotion of the city through sports. Reach the author at jfiddler@scng.com or follow JJ on Twitter: @PTGazetteSports.