A&M-Commerce 2, Ouachita Baptist 0
Location: Lion Soccer Field * Commerce, Texas
Records: A&M-Commerce (1-0-0), Ouachita Baptist (0-1-0)
Up Next : vs. No. 10 Fort Lewis * Sunday, Sept. 2 * 11:00 a.m. * Wichita Falls, Texas
"It's always nice to start the season with a win, but we left a lot of opportunities out on the field tonight," said head coach Neil Piper. "We're going to have to play much better Sunday facing a tough Fort Lewis team, as they are a big, talented team. But you always like to start off the season on a positive note."
The Lions wasted little time in getting on the board in the 12th minute Sydney Lawthers tailed her first career point for the Lions off a cross from Brionna Minde, punching in a loose ball to put A&M-Commerce in 1-0. A mere three minutes later the Lions looked to extend the lead when sophomore forward Jade Bell broke through the Tigers back line and had a breakaway only to be stopped by goalkeeper Shelby Sheperd.
The Lions would not be held back for much longer when Eva Brutto connected on shot from inside the 18-yard box off a feed from Minde in the 25th minute of action in the first half. The Lions were able to get off 10 shots in the first half but were unable to push any more past Sheperd.
The second half was a series of missed chances for A&M-Commerce as they are unable to any more distance in between them and the Tigers on the scoreboard. The defensive play of the entire backline of Laura Heron, Catie Hyde, Callie Annett, Tareyn Blanton and Lawthers made it tough going for the Tiger attack.
Goalkeeper Tracey Rogers had a solid outing in her first start in a Lion uniform, making four saves in net and keeping Ouachita Baptist off balance, logging both the first victory and first shutout of her Lion career.
A&M-Commerce now takes to the road for the next five contests, beginning with a stiff challenge facing the 10th ranked Fort Lewis College Skyhawks on Sunday September 2 in Wichita Falls, Texas. The Skyhawks were picked to finish third in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference this season and are coming off a season in which they advanced to the Round of Sixteen of the NCAA Tournament.