USC lacrosse dominates Oregon in an offensive showcase

The Trojans scored a season-high 21 goals.

A photo of USC lacrosse's Shelby Tilton running past San Diego State defenders

The No. 17 USC women’s lacrosse team defeated the Oregon Ducks 21-5 at Soni McAlister Field on Sunday. The Ducks hadn’t beaten a ranked team since their 2018 victory over then-No. 16 USC, and that streak continued after a shellacking from the Trojans.

USC handed the Ducks their fifth straight loss and their worst defeat of the season. USC’s offense started the game on fire, scoring the game’s first four goals and ending the first period with a 10-1 lead. Those 10 goals were the most the team has scored in a single period all year, almost doubling their previous high of six.

The Trojan offense didn’t let up, going on to score 21 goals, their most in a game this season.

“Our ball movement was really great today, so I think they waited for really good opportunities and didn’t settle for okay opportunities,” head coach Lindsey Munday said. “We’re unselfish moving that ball, and whoever got that shot at the end went up and put it away.”

USC’s offense was surgical throughout the game, constantly probing and finding the soft spots in the Ducks’ defense and taking advantage when they found them.

Not to be outdone, the USC defense put in its best effort of the season, allowing only five goals. The Ducks struggled to penetrate the Trojan defense, defaulting to throwing listless passes around the net.

“We got into people’s hands which is what the main thing was,” sophomore attacker Shelby Tilton said. “They couldn’t really feed inside, obviously our zone is so great they couldn’t really dodge.”

The Ducks took 17 shots in the game and only converted five of them.

The Trojans meanwhile scored 21 goals on 33 shots. A big factor in the Trojans’ scoring bonanza was their transition opportunities after turnovers.

The Ducks had 16 turnovers on the day and USC used those miscues to their advantage.

“Our defense is a huge factor in our goals,” redshirt freshman attacker Isabelle Vitale said. “It starts from them when they cause a turnover and then they push it to the midfielders and then the midfielders keep the fast break going and we finish it.”

Finish it they did. USC’s offense was electric, shooting 64% from the field with precise passes that led to scores, especially off turnovers.

USC’s offense was spearheaded by Tilton, Vitale and graduate midfielder Kelsey Huff. The three players accounted for 12 of the Trojans 21 goals with each player netting four.

The Trojans dominated every facet of the game on Sunday, earning their largest margin of victory of the young season. They’ve now won two in a row after a tough loss to Princeton.

USC will look to continue their dominance when they travel to Berkeley to play the Cal Golden Bears on Friday.