North Newton – The Central Christian College women's soccer team got their season off to a positive start with a 2-0 victory over the Bethel College Threshers. The contest, technically a home game for the Tigers, was played on Bethel's field because the CCC field was too wet from recent rains.
The first half, though completely dominated by the Tigers, resulted in a 0-0 draw. The Threshers numbers have been depleted by injury and they had just 11 healthy bodies for Saturday’s match. Their strategy was to pack in the defense and try and keep the Tigers off the board. The strategy worked in the opening frame, as the Tigers struggled to create offense by breaking down the Thresher defense inside their half of the field.
Things changed early in the second half when Jaci Carranza was fouled inside the 18 yard box by a Thresher defender. The Tigers were awarded a penalty kick, and senior Nikki Neal stepped to the penalty spot and buried a ball in the lower right corner to give the Tigers a 1-0 lead. In the 61 minute, the Tigers struck again. Junior transfer, Rachel Meier found the lower left corner of the goal from about 20 yards out. She was assisted on the goal by Caranza and Gabriela Barnard.
The Tigers had a couple of more good looks at goal in the finals 30 minutes, but were unable to push another goal across.
While the Tiger offense peppered the Thresher net to the tune of 20 total shots and eight shots on goal, the defense pitched a shutout, not allowing the Threshers a single shot. Freshman goal keeper,Goldie Bougher, didn't have to make a save in recording her first clean sheet as a Tiger.
"We could've been sharper in our passing, smarter in our runs, and more clinical with our finishing," said CCC head coach Scott Fogarty, "You have to be happy with the result. We did what we had to. With four players playing together for the first time on the back line and a new goalie, we did a fantastic job to holding them to no shots. We'll enjoy tonight but come tomorrow our focus shifts to the next game.”
Next up for the 1-0 Tigers is a match with crosstown rival McPherson College on Aug. 31, at McPherson College. Game time is slated for 4:30 pm.