|Niners drop road match at East Carolina Sunday|
GREENVILLE, N.C. – East Carolina scored early then tacked on another goal later in the second half to mount a 2-0 victory over Charlotte Sunday afternoon in Conference USA women’s soccer action. The match concludes the opening weekend of competition for both teams.
The 49ers, who started league play with a triumph at FIU Friday night, were unable to secure a second-straight win by traveling to the in-state foe.
The Pirates jumped out in front 1-0 in the second minute, as Danielle Romero’s corner kick was headed home by Skylar Pool at 1:56 past starting Charlotte (6-4, 1-1 C-USA) goalkeeper Annika McHenry. McHenry was making her first appearance in the starting lineup this season after playing for over 80 minutes Friday against the Panthers.
East Carolina (4-5-2, 1-1 C-USA) controlled much of the action during the first period, holding the Niners out of the shot column until Amanda Jones sent an attempt wide at 27:09. However, by the intermission, Charlotte were able to draw even in the category at three apiece.
The 49ers then had the initial shot of the second period when Maddie Kiebel’s threat sailed high at 54:52.
McHenry continued to keep the Niners’ chances alive, stopping a pair of Pirates attempts before ECU added the insurance goal at 76:04. Kendall Frey fed Lexi Miller, who made a move to the right side before finishing across the goal mouth to the far left post to increase the margin to 2-0.
Charlotte managed just two corner kicks and a shot by Sara Trexler the remainder of the match but netminder Saundra Baron and the East Carolina defense stood tall.
Kiebel was the lone 49ers player with more than one shot, registering two, though Trexler’s late attempt was the lone placed on-goal, forcing Baron into a save. Poole was the only Pirate with two shots, as ECU held a slim, 7-6, advantage in the category.
Charlotte returns to Transamerica Field for Alumni Weekend and the first two home Conference USA contests of the campaign. The 49ers will start the weekend with a 7 p.m. Friday meeting with UTSA before playing host to Middle Tennessee at 2 p.m. Sunday. It will mark the first time in school history the Niners have faced either opponent.
Prior to Friday’s game, at approximately 6:45 p.m., the Charlotte athletics department and women’s soccer program will retire the jersey number of Hailey Beam (2006-09). She will join her sister, Lindsey Beam-Ozimek, as the only two retired numbers in program history.