By Juan Betancourt
The Brookhaven College women’s soccer team took their first shutout win of the season Sept. 11, against Murray State College with 6-0 score. The match was also the first annual First Responder Match to raise money for the Dallas Fallen Officers Fund.
Before kickoff, players and supporters honored local officers and took a brief moment of silence to honor and remember the fallen victims of the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.
From the start of the game, the Lady Bears quickly put pressure on the Aggies defense.
In the first two minutes of gameplay, the Lady Bears’ Vanessa Gonzalez got the first shot on target from a corner kick deflection, but her shot went wide from the goal line.
For the next five minutes, the Lady Bears kept the Aggies on the defense until the home team broke the deadlock as Karol Rodriguez beat out her marker with a nutmeg to put the Brookhaven team ahead at 1-0.
The Lady Bears passing game gave them control possession of the field as Rodriguez and Lady Bear Makesha Barron connected for a one-two shot goal as Barron made it 2-0 in the 11th minute.
Five minutes passed as the Aggies tried to respond. Aggies Sasha Portillo went for a wide run from the right wing and tried to cross it to Aggies Allison Yeager, but was too slow to reach the penalty box.
The Lady Bears were awarded a free kick in the 27th minute with Samantha Baxter faking the set play, passing it to Brenda Hernandez. With no pressure she took her chance from 30 yards, surprising the Aggies’ goalkeeper, Jasmine Castro, to take a comfortable 3-0 halftime lead.
Two minutes into the second half, the Bears scored again as Gonzalez easily tapped a corner kick into the net.
The Lady Bears’ Julie Ortega timed the high throw ball right to her head to give a header pass to Maddie Irwin, going one-on-one against Castro.
Irwin tried to cut the ball too far left and missed her shot.
It did not take long for Irwin to get another opportunity. She cut and dribbled the ball twice to the left to juke the lone Aggies defender and took a low shot into the corner of the net making the score 5-0.
With 10 minutes left on the clock, another corner kick was awarded to the Lady Bears as another bad clearance from the Aggies defense made Jazmine Bustos take an easy 5-yard open shot for goal. The Lady Bears got their final goal of the day making the final score 6-0.
That did not stop the Aggies from putting pressure on in the last few minutes of stoppage time. The ball took a double bounce from the field as it went over Lady Bear Joanna Anisebess to leave Aggies Kaytlin Kanode by herself.
Kanode could not control the ball and was pressured by the Lady Bears’ defense and forced out of bounds.
“The girls played very well. We’ve been getting better every week,” Jim Elder, head coach, said after the win. “I was really happy and proud of the team.”
The Bears are now 2-2 and will travel to Cedar Valley Sept. 20 for their first conference game of the season.