HPU WSOC Panthers Score Four To Drop Upstate

Posted by Press Release on September 22, 2018 at 7:28 pm under College | Comments are off for this article

• High Point University women’s soccer secures their first Big South victory of the season, after hanging four goals on visiting USC Upstate
• The Panthers heavily outshot their opponents once again, taking 21 attempts at frame, to the Spartans’ eight
• Starting junior forward Alex Denny scored a brace, along with the game-winner on the day, her three goals on the season put her in a tie for a team-high

HIGH POINT, N.C. – Opening their Big South season with a draw at Hampton last Wednesday, High Point University women’s soccer won handily this Saturday, defeating visiting USC Upstate by a final of 4-1.

The Panthers took immediate control of the pace of play, taking a pair shots in the opening 90 seconds. Junior midfielder Ashlyn Kearney would produce the first scoring chance of the day after steering a free kick from over 20 yards out on goal. The Pennsylvania-native would not be denied however, netting her first goal of the season just moments later in the 22nd minute.

Kearney’s tally came off a feed from a streaking Charla Ward, who added her third point of the year on the helper. The midfielder’s goal would hit just underneath the crossbar to go beyond the goalline, as the Panthers’ defense held the Spartans to just a single shot at net for the remainder of the half.

Holding a 1-0 lead at the break, the Purple & White continued to mount pressure in the second half, breaking through less than three minutes after the starting whistle.

“We put ourselves in the right position today,” said Head Coach Brandi Fontaine. “It was just executing that final piece of scoring the goals, and having the focus and the discipline in that last split second that we didn’t have the previous games. It was nice to see some of them finally fall our way.”

With her first goal of the year coming off a game-winner at James Madison in the 88th minute, starting forward Alex Denny secured her second goal of 2018 in the 48th against Upstate, burying a Skyler Prillaman pass that did not look too unlike the connection the pair put away in Harrisonburg.

Denny would eventually give her team a 3-0 lead just minutes later, after a shot by defender Kyle Levesque was blocked and came back to the forward just above the six-yard box. Denny struck the header just out of the reach of the Spartan goalkeeper, recording the second brace of her career, and her first since October 1, 2016.

Trailing only Denny and Prillaman for a team-high, freshman forward Caitlin Shepherd added her third tally of the season, later in the second half, heading in a perfectly steered cross from fellow first-year Carsyn Gold as the Panthers scored four goals for the second time this year.

After taking just four shots through the opening 73 minutes, the visiting side would finally get an opportunity in the latter stages of the match, scoring on an HPU turnover in the attacking third of the field.

With the Panthers early domination of the opening 70 minutes securing the afternoon’s win however, Upstate’s lone tally would make little difference, as High Point improved their active conference record to 1-0-1 on the season.

>> Denny’s five shots on the afternoon are a career-high for the forward, as she’s secured three goals in her last three appearances
>> Prillaman’s assist gives the freshman a three-game point streak, as she currently leads the Panthers with eight points on the year
>> Carsyn Gold’s helper goes down as the freshman’s first points of her career, after playing a career-high 67 minutes against Hampton earlier this week
>> The Panthers have outshot opponents 53-19 in conference play thus far, averaging 2.50 goals per match against Big South opponents

• HPU gets back on the road to faceoff with Campbell next Wednesday at 7 p.m.
• The Panthers’ last contest against the Camels ended in a 3-1 victory for HPU, during the Big South tournament semifinals

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