Off to a good start

By Casey Kellas, The Observer August 19, 2013 10:52 am

Eastern Oregon University’s Erika Whitehurst, left, chases after the ball during the Mountaineers’ scrimmage with Western Wyoming Community College Friday. EOU won the scrimmage, 4-0. (Casey Kellas/The Observer)
Eastern Oregon University’s Erika Whitehurst, left, chases after the ball during the Mountaineers’ scrimmage with Western Wyoming Community College Friday. EOU won the scrimmage, 4-0. (Casey Kellas/The Observer)
 

EOU women’s soccer team defeats WWCC 4-0 in scrimmage 

The Eastern Oregon University women’s soccer team got the 2013 season off to a good start with a 4-0 victory over Western Wyoming Community College Friday in an exhibition contest.

After a season in which the Mountaineers managed just one win, coach Jennifer Simonetti liked what she saw from her group Friday.

“I’m pleased with the effort,” Simonetti said. “I definitely think they worked on things we’ve been focusing on this last week in practice.”

The Mountaineers dominated the scrimmage, which consisted of two 30-minute periods. 

EOU controlled the ball for the majority of the game and put 12 shots on goal.

“We don’t have a ton of team speed, so we want to let the ball do the work,” Simonetti said. “The longer we have the ball, the better chance we have of winning.”

Haley Hill got EOU on the board at the 16:13 mark of the first period. 

Erika Whitehurst added another goal at the 3:02 mark, and Kaeliana De Vera lofted one in with 37 seconds left in the opening period.

The second period was more evenly contested, and Eastern Oregon scored once at the 1:14 mark on a goal by Tori Fedora.

Fedora added two assists in the win.

The Mustangs didn’t put any shots on goal for the scrimmage.

“I thought we played really good,” De Vera said. “Especially with only five days of practice. I think we looked a lot better than we did last season.”

De Vera said that this group of players have gotten along well and she is excited for the regular season to get going.

“I thought we looked good together,” she said. “There are a few new people in there, but we just gelled real good together.”

She added that the aggressiveness that the Mountaineers played with is something the coaches have stressed in practice.

“They want us to play easy, play the feet,” De Vera said. “If you don’t see anything, don’t force it. We have the skill and the ball control to drop it back and see it.”

The Mountaineers host Columbia Basin Community College Saturday at 1 p.m. in another scrimmage.

Simonetti thinks that Friday’s win could set the tone for what the Mountaineers want to accomplish this season.

“We have a couple of key points that they really need to focus on next week,” Simonetti said. 

“One is fitness again. Just being a little more fit and running a little harder. Two is executing better and finishing so we’re not struggling at the end of games.”

The Mountaineers start the season Aug. 31 with the Mountie Madness Tournament.