Pirates Cruise Past Wildcats On Pitch, 3-0

UABSPORTS.COM Senior Hali Oughton nets game-winner and adds assist in ECU's 3-0 win.
Senior Hali Oughton nets game-winner and adds assist in ECU's 3-0 win.

Aug. 31, 2012

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GREENVILLE, N.C. - Senior Hali Oughton scored her first goal of the season and assisted on another helping the East Carolina women's soccer team to a 3-0 shutout victory over in-state foe Davidson in front of the second-largest crowd in school history Friday at the ECU Soccer Stadium. With the win, the Pirates even their record at 2-2, while the Wildcats fall to 1-2.

The Pirates wasted little time in getting on the board scoring in the fifth minute of play on the first of two well-placed corner kicks by Danielle Romano. The redshirt sophomore sent a shot into the crowded box, where Oughton corralled the ball in the air sending a shot past Wildcat keeper Rachel Locke for the games first goal. For Oughton, it was her third career goal and first game-winner since her freshman season in 2009.

"For our team it's all about our energy level and how we defend as a group," said head coach Rob Donnenwirth about his teams play Friday night. "We create and feed off of our defending and transition play. Tonight I think we did really well for long stretches of the game, but there were a few moments where we started to get tired and Davidson was able to be more aggressive. But when that happened, we were able to keep the play in front of us.

Nearly 35 minutes later, Romano sent another corner kick into the box where sophomore Stephanie Seagrave headed the ball past a diving Locke, who had six saves on the night, for her first collegiate goal, staking the Pirates to a 2-0 lead.

"One of the biggest things is we were dangerous on set pieces," said Donnenwirth about scoring on a pair of corner kicks. "We've had a lot of corners this year and have come up empty, so we changed things and added a new server in Danielle. Her corners tonight were dangerous and that made a huge impact in the game."

ECU's final goal came in the 59th minute when Chrissy Gratz received a free kick from Oughton and then dribbled the ball down the center of the pitch beating Locke one-on-one with a shot to the lower right corner. It was also Gratz first goal of the season and ninth of her career.

Junior Pirate keeper Christiane Cordero posted her second clean sheet of the season, ninth career, stopping one Wildcat shot on goal, which came at the 77:12 mark. Stephanie Piperno sent a shot into the box where a diving Cordero got just enough of the ball deflecting it wide hitting off the right post.

"I thought our backs played a tremendous game tonight and Christiane had an unbelievable save at the end of the game," Donnenwirth added.

For the fourth-straight match, Gratz led the Pirates in shot with four on the night, three on goal. Senior Caty Butler and redshirt sophomore Lexi Miller each added a pair of shots with one each on goal.

ECU, who outshot Davidson on the night 14-6 (10-1 on goal), will be back in action on Sunday, Sept. 2 when it plays host to Charlotte at 2 p.m. (ET).

Post-Match Notes:

  • Official attendance was 530, the second-largest crowd in school history ... School record came just a year ago in the season opener against South Carolina (853 on Aug. 19, 2011).
  • Hali Oughton collected a career-best three points on the night (goal, assist).
  • Danielle Romano recorded her team-leading third assist of the season and posted her first career multi-assist game.
  • Jackie Cajigal (freshman) and Lexi Herring (redshirt freshman) made their collegiate debuts, while Skylar Poole (redshirt sophomore) and Brett Thomas (sophomore) each stepped on the pitch for the first time in 2012.
  • ECU has scored five goals on the season all coming from a different Pirate (Kendall Frey, Gratz, L. Miller, Oughton and Seagrave).