College round-up: So close

College round-up: So close

All four Charleston college teams fought to one-goal decisions this weekend, with The Citadel winning the last cross-town rivalry match of 2013 2-1 over CSU, while the College of Charleston men and women each lost 0-1.

The Citadel 2, CSU 1

Naomi Carter comes off her line to kill a chance by CSU forward Chelsea Frankeny.

Naomi Carter comes off her line to kill a chance by CSU forward Chelsea Frankeny.

WLI FIELD: Freshmen goalkeepers Naomi Carter of The Citadel and Dana McLaughlin of Charleston Southern turned back a combined 20 saves Friday afternoon in a wild derby match that featured 23 shots on frame and yet another clutch finish from torrid Bulldog attacker Mariana Garcia.

The Citadel (2-2-1) opened the scoring at 30:47 when senior midfielder Ruth Leiva put the Buccaneers in a bit of a scramble, converting a nice pass from senior midfielder Jillian Meyer into a brisk shot from just outside the goal box. The event carried the distinction of being the first goal for The Citadel this year by someone not named Mariana Garcia. Buccaneers sophomore forward Chelsea Frankeny leveled the account in the 59th minute on an assist from senior forward Toni Lashley,  but Garcia found a way through the clutter in front of McLauglin’s net with 11 minutes remaining and put the Bulldogs ahead for good.

Ruth Levia

Ruth Levia

For Garcia, a pre-season All-Conference selection from Bogota, Colombia, it was her fifth goal in five games this season.

“We’ve continued to get better every game,” said Citadel Coach Bob Winch. “We had someone different score today. Mariana Garcia is a very talented player, but we were glad to see Ruthie get a goal.

“It’s always a tough game with Charleston Southern. They’re a good team, they work very hard, they have some talented players. It’s our only opportunity this year for a cross-town rivalry, (because) we’re not playing The College (of Charleston), so it was important.”

Citadel freshman Naomi Carter from New Zealand.

Naomi Carter

Only stellar keeping by Carter and McLaughlin kept the scoreboard from turning over like a trip odometer.

McLaughlin picked up 12 saves against 21 Citadel shots, 14 of which were on frame. But Carter’s eight saves didn’t tell the story of her command in the box, which included at least three gutsy decisions to charge out and smother Buccaneer chances. The goal she surrendered to Frankeny was the second of two consecutive one-on-one chances by Frankeny, the first of which Carter rejected with authority. The ginger from New Zealand finished the contest with eight saves against nine shots on frame.

Dana McLaughlin kills a shot in the first half.

Dana McLaughlin kills a shot in the first half.

At the other end, McLaughlin found herself under siege from the opening kick as junior midfielder Ana Mesa and German freshman midfielder Lea Raedle looked intent on breaking the game open.

The match had a frenetic quality, but the Buccaneers seemed to generate better-quality chances after Frankeny’s equalizer, breaking her ahead down the left side of the Citadel defense again and again. Garcia’s goal reversed that trend, though the Buccaneers counter-attacked frantically in the dying minutes.

9-8-2013-Frankeny-and-Montana-Hinson

Chelsea Frankeny of CSU and defender Montana Hinson of The Citadel, fight for a ball in the late going.

“They’re always really aggressive, always fairly direct on this field, and I think that maybe we came in not with the right mental attitude,” said CSU Coach Eric Terrill. “I think that early in the game, The Citadel was more on top of it than we were. I thought we created opportunities, but their goalkeeper played wonderfully. We had some point-blank opportunities on her, and she came up with some huge saves. Toni in the first half, Chelsea Frankeny in the second half, I thought they had some really good opportunities. And again, they made the most of the opportunities they had and really worked hard to put the ball in the back of the net.

“The game was what it was… This field was really not much of a soccer game, per se, it was more of a ‘Hey, win the ball, get forward as quickly as you can.’

9-8-2013-Toni-Lashley-web

Senior forward Toni Lashley, who leads the Bucs with four goals this season, picked up her second assist of the year.

“So I feel like we tried to play early on… but I decided that we needed to go more direct as well. And that paid off. We scored a goal there. I thought that we had some real legitimate opportunities toward the end of the half, but we just made a mistake at the end of the game and allowed a very talented player … to put it in the back of the net.

“But I think it’s the mentality. Bob instills this mentality in them, and I don’t think that we had that mentality to start the game. I think that we have some very talented players, but I don’t think that we had the right mentality to win the game.”

Winch indicated that the Bulldogs’ long-ball approach was the result of their early season experience. “We’ve really concentrated on defending, but on offense we’re playing a little more direct than in the first two weeks, when we were playing shorter balls and it wasn’t working out for us.

Ana Mesa of The Citadel and Erica Grazzini of CSU battle for possession.

Ana Mesa of The Citadel and Erica Grazzini of CSU battle for possession.

“So we decided to kinda go Route One. And what it gives to kids is more hope up top, and more opportunity. Like today, I think we had 21 shots. Last game we had 27. But the first weekend, it was like one shot.”

The Citadel plays at Presbyterian in Clinton on Friday, then returns home on Wednesday, Sept. 18 for a match against Winthrop. The Bulldogs begin their Southern Conference schedule on Sept. 27 at Furman. CSU plays Thursday at Mercer and Sunday at Georgia Southern before hosting USC Upstate on Sept. 20.

The CSU account of the game is here, The Citadel’s recap here.

College of Charleston women o, Kent State 1

(Nick Vlattas, College of Charleston sports information)

eli-1-web

Eli Sarasola

PATRIOTS POINT: The College of Charleston women’s soccer team was unable to overcome a first-half Kent State goal as the Cougars fell, 1-0, to the Golden Flashes to wrap up the College of Charleston Cup at Patriots Point on Sunday afternoon.

Despite the loss, CofC (2-4 overall) claims the tournament crown through a convoluted tie-breaker scenario. All four teams (CofC, Kent State, Virginia Commonwealth and Coastal Carolina) went 1-1 in tournament play with a goal differential of (+/-) zero. CofC and VCU tied for the most goals scored (3) in the tournament, and CofC beat VCU head-to-head on Friday night.

CofC’s Eli Sarasola (San Sebastian, Spain), McCallie Jones (Charlotte, N.C.) and Nicole Koretsky (Manalapan, N.J.) were all-tournament selections.

The only goal in Sunday’s match came in the 21st minute when Kent State’s Jaclyn Dutton played a clever ball over the top of the Cougar defense and onto the boot of Stephanie Haugh. Haugh took one touch and then took a wonder-strike on the half volley which rocketed across the goal mouth and into the side netting.

“Not our best performance,” said head coach Christian Michner. “You never fault the effort of the players but it has to be consistent for 90 minutes. It wasn’t until we went down by a goal that we felt a sense of peril that we might lose the game. The players really stepped up and started to take over the match, but in soccer it’s tough to score goals and we weren’t able to put the ball in the back of the net and one goal decided it today.”

(Read the rest of Vlattas’ game story here.)

Things get no easier for the Cougars, who head south into SEC country this week for games at Auburn on Friday and Georgia on Saturday.

Furman 1, College of Charleston men 0

(College of Charleston sports information)

GREENVILLE: The College of Charleston men’s soccer team fell, 1-0, in overtime at Stone Stadium on Saturday evening.

The Cougars (1-2) were outshot, 16-17, but defended well to force the game into overtime. Freshman forward Xavier Rajpaul (Port of Spain, Trinidad) led the Cougars with four shot attempts.

Sophomore goalkeeper Alex Young (Greenville, S.C.) made his first career start and made three saves to keep a shutout through regulation, but Eli Pinner scored on the first – and only – shot of the overtime period in the 94thminute. Pinner’s decisive strike was a long-range drive which found its way into the left side of the net.

Young made his debut when he started the second half of CofC’s 1-0 win over Xavier on Sunday, Sept. 1 to replace veteran keeper Kees Heemskerk (Zaandam, Netherlands) who suffered a back injury in a collision late in the first half. Heemskerk is listed as day-to-day.

Other nagging injuries forced CofC to play with limited substitutions and nine different players offered a full 94 minutes.

“I really am disappointed for the players,” said head coach Ralph Lundy. “They played great, they played hard. It’s a tough way to lose a great match.”

The Cougars will look to bounce back when they return home to host Vermont on Friday, Sept. 13. Kickoff is slated for 7 p.m. from Patriots Point.

TOP IMAGE: Citadel freshman keeper Naomi Carter won this game of chicken against high-scoring CSU forward Toni Lashley. Dan Conover photos. 

1 Comment

  1. Hi Dan- It was nice meeting you yesterday and we appreciate your coverage of the game. Nice articles above. Thanks for all you do in promoting low country soccer. Sincerely.