This past weekend the Occidental Tigers upset then-No. 10 UC Santa Barbara Gauchos 7-6 in an exciting game. The game had four lead changes and six ties throughout the game. Nanea Fujiyama led the way for Occidental with four goals, one of which tied the game at six and she had the game winning assist.
Throughout the first half it UCSB who would be ahead by the slim one goal edge, but that changed when Occidental took a 3-2 lead on a penalty shot goal by Fujiyama, but UCSB was always quick to respond when Occidental went up by one goal. UCSB took a 5-4 and later on a 6-5 lead in the fourth quarter with about four minutes left. Occidental scored 30 seconds later on Fujiuyama's third goal of the game to tie it at six. The game winner came when Fujiuyama found a streaking Lindsay Albino who scored her only goal which was the game winner.
Fujiyama was the player of the game with four goals and the game-winning assist, but goalie Rachel Adeleye was key to the win with nine blocks and five steals in the upset win. This has to go down as one of the biggest upsets in Occidental history.
Head coach Larry Zubrin sees this win as a potential program changing victory:
"Obviously it's a great victory for our program," Occidental coach Larry Zubrin said. "It's definitely something 10 years from now the girls can look back on as a major accomplishment. But for the time being, we're focused on continuing to get better and working towards SCIAC play."
Significance of this win is huge since it was a win over a ranked Division I team and to compare to another sport this upset could be viewed similarly to college football where a FCS team defeats and FBS team, and possibly even to the historic Appalachian State victory over Michigan who was ranked No. 5 at the time.
Even with the great win and if Occidental runs the table the rest of the way they are still likely to take part in the NCAA tournament play-in game against the MAAC. Regardless of those future prospects, this win is huge for the Occidental program and slowly there is some more parity coming to the women's games.
The win at the time was their sixth straight and Occidental ended up going 4-0 on the weekend and now have a record of 10-2.