Oct. 20, 2013
GREENVILLE, N.C. – Redshirt junior Skylar Poole netted her third goal of the season in the sixth minute, which proved to be all the East Carolina women’s soccer team needed to shut out Florida Atlantic, 1-0, Sunday afternoon at the ECU Soccer Stadium.
With the victory, the Pirates compiled consecutive wins for the first time in 2013, after their 2-1 overtime triumph at Florida International on Friday night.
“We probably should have ended the game a little sooner,” said head coach Rob Donnenwirth. “I’m happy with the win and I’m happy with six points this weekend.”
East Carolina (6-8-2, 3-4-0 C-USA) opened the match in attack mode from the opening whistle, establishing a crisp passing game and producing several shot attempts in the early minutes. It was in the sixth minute that the Pirates earned their first corner kick of the game, which redshirt junior defender Danielle Romano placed into the heart of Florida Atlantic’s (3-9-4, 1-3-3) defense. Junior defender Kelly Miller gathered the cross and found Poole just several feet from the left goal post before sending the shot into the back of the net to give ECU a 1-0 lead.
“I thought our first half was really good,” said Donnenwirth. “We passed the ball well and we kept them stretched by finding our forwards deep.”
The Pirates went on to dominate possession for the duration of the first half, outshooting the Owls by a 10-1 margin and holding a 6-3 advantage in corner kick opportunities. Freshman Lana Spitler took four of her game-high five shots in the period for ECU.
Florida Atlantic appeared to settle in for much of the second half, generating several scoring opportunities and two shots on goal, but East Carolina’ defense remained steady and denied every FAU scoring chance to preserve the win.
“I give them credit for coming out differently in the second half,” Donnenwirth said. “They changed their system of play and put in two forwards and they pressured us a little bit more. That being said, most of their shots were from a pretty far distance and it really didn’t hurt us. I think our backline was great.”
Redshirt sophomore goalkeeper Saundra Baron made two saves in her third shutout of the season, while the Owls’ net-minder, Courtney Zwetsch, made five stops on the day.
The Pirates outshot FAU, 15-3, in the contest – their highest shot total of the season. ECU also owned a 7-5 advantage in corner kicks and a 6-2 edge in shots on goal.
East Carolina will go back on the road for its final two away games of the season against Southern Miss and Rice next weekend. The Pirates will play the Golden Eagles next Friday, Oct. 25 at 4 p.m., before facing the Owls on Sunday, Oct. 27 at 2 p.m.