Wilcox Lifts Pirates Over Old Dominion, 1-0
Sept. 13, 2009
GREENVILLE, N.C. - With less than four minutes remaining in the game, Bailey Wilcox scored the game's only goal to give East Carolina a 1-0 victory over Old Dominion Sunday afternoon at Bunting Field. Wilcox sent a shot from the left side of the net past Old Dominion goalkeeper Bri Alvarado for game-winner.
The victory moves the Pirates to 4-1-1 this season while the Monarchs fall to 3-4-0. In East Carolina history, only the 1999 team with its five wins has had more victories through the first six games than the current squad. Four other times ECU has recorded four wins in the first six games, but all four of those teams also had two losses.
"Today's game was filled with momentum swings," head coach Rob Donnenwirth said. "I thought we played very well at the beginning of the game and had some great chances, and again toward the end."
At 3:57 into the game, East Carolina had its first scoring chance when it received a corner kick. Jessica Swanson took the corner and Jessica Woodward headed the ball toward the goal, but Alvarado made the save. At the 9:37 mark, the Pirates had another corner kick and nearly converted, but Swanson headed the ball just wide.
Old Dominion's best chance of the first half came at 17:35 when Victoria Johnson slipped past the ECU defense, but goalie Berit Hansen dove to her right and made the save for the Pirates.
The first period ended with nearly even statistics in every category. The Pirates took eight shots compared with six for the Monarchs, ECU had six fouls while ODU had five and the goalkeepers both made three saves.
In the second half, Swanson had a scoring chance at 48:23 when she received a pass on the right side of the goal from Chrissy Gratz, but Swanson fired high.
The Monarchs' Johnson had another chance to put her team ahead at 68:44 when she sent a shot from 30 yards out toward the net, but the ball struck the crossbar and bounced over the goal. It was ODU's last scoring chance.
Wilcox broke through with the game-winning goal at 86:21 on a pass from Swanson. Earlier in the match, at 6:57, Wilcox was jumping up to head the ball and caught an elbow from an Old Dominion player. Wilcox suffered a gash on the right side of her head and was taken out for the remainder of the first half before returning to action at the start of the second.
"I give Bailey a lot of credit for coming back," Donnenwirth said. "I can't ask for more heart than she showed out here today."
The Pirate defense recorded its second shutout of the season, allowing just nine shots. Hansen, making her first career start, earned the shutout as she picked up a career-high four saves.
"This was the best game this season for our backs," according to Donnenwirth. "Berit played well and made a big save for us when she had to."
East Carolina returns to action Friday, when it travels to Conway, S.C., to face Coastal Carolina at 7 p.m. A year ago, ECU lost at home to Coastal Carolina 2-1.