Pirates Take Season Opener, 1-0
Aug. 22, 2008
GREENVILLE, N.C. - The East Carolina soccer team christened the 2008 season with a hard-fought 1-0 victory over in-state rival Western Carolina on Friday afternoon at Bunting Field. The Pirates move to 1-0-0 on the young season while the Catamounts dip to 0-1-0.
ECU carried the play in the first few minutes, and broke through quickly. Just three minutes in, freshman Leah Bagonis slotted an accurate through ball into the box which senior Blair Heffner calmly put inside the right post. The contest balanced as the first half wore down, as midfield play dictated the game's flow. The Pirates out-shot Western Carolina 5-2 in the opening interval while they were also whistled for six fouls as compared to the visitors' three.
The Catamounts picked up their offensive play in the second stanza, but could not find the back of the net. Western Carolina's best chance came in the 75th minute when Bri Cunningham lifted an optimistic shot from the top of the box that went just high of the crossbar. The goal would not have counted, however, as the Catamounts were offside. East Carolina was able to keep perpetual possession in the last five minutes to run out the clock.
Senior Amber Campbell turned in her first clean sheet of the season. She now sits just one shutout away from breaking the school record of 22.5, held by Amy Horton.
"I believe that we started the game off very well," said head coach Rob Donnenwirth. "It is nice to get a win but we will have to learn to finish teams as the season wears on. Our backs played spectacular today and they were the difference in the game."
The Pirates return to the pitch on Sunday as they travel to Florence, S.C. for a meeting with the Francis Marion Patriots. Kickoff is scheduled for 2 p.m.