Updated Sun, Sep 15, 2013 5:27 pm
An aggressive and quick Centre College squad gave Marietta’s defense fits en route to a 5-0 road victory.
The Colonels wasted little time vaulting into the lead after an eleventh-minute unassisted goal from senior Morgan Collins. The Michigan native sprinted past Marietta’s defensive front and blasted a shot to the top right corner from a tight angle.
Nineteen minutes later, freshman Shannon Murray made her way to the same spot, right side of the box, and hit a low line-drive shot into the bottom corner of the net, putting the Colonels up 2-0.
The Colonels registered 13 shots on goal in the first half, but they put in several more crosses that went beyond the reach of forwards. Marietta coach Tracy Blasius admitted that Centre’s overall team speed made the Pioneers’ defensive assignments difficult to execute, but she applauded her team’s hustle.
“If we’re set up one versus one, they were probably going to beat us and they got [crosses] in more than I would’ve liked,” Blasius said. “As far as overall competing [is concerned], I actually think this was one of our best matches.”
Marietta’s offense saw a slight improvement in the second half. The Pioneers earned two corner kicks and two shots, including a free kick in the box off of a pass back infraction.
Junior Stevie Reilly took the free kick from only a few yards out, but the defensive front of Centre held.
For Centre’s offense, the successful day continued in the second half.
Freshman Megan Sherwood netted goals in the 50th and 57th minutes. The first came in the box off of a rebound opportunity from goalkeeper Kaitlyn Pearse. Sherwood’s second goal came in the form of a header off of a cross from Collins.
Freshman Madeline Loftus added a header of her own from sophomore Rachel Harris, putting the Colonels up 5-0.
Both squads played aggressively with 26 called fouls between them, including a yellow card issued to freshman Brandy Orth-Becker in the second half.
Throughout the game, Blaisus emphasized the importance of winning 50-50 balls in the air and liked the aggression her team displayed.
“I didn’t coach them to play dirty, but they didn’t. They just fought hard,” Blasius said.
Centre (5-1-1, 0-0) hosts Transylvania University at home on Wednesday.
The Pioneers (2-3, 0-0) will also wait until Wednesday to play when they kick off a home match against Washington and Jefferson College at 4 p.m.