Soccer Falls in Final Pre-Conference Match, 3-0 to Elon

WILMINGTON, N.C. – The Texas A&M-Corpus Christi women's soccer team wrapped up its appearance in the Courtyard Marriott Wilmington Women's Soccer Invitational with a 3-0 defeat at the hands of Elon on Sunday. Keeper Audrey Baldwin had six saves in a losing effort for the Islanders (1-5-0).

Elon (4-1-1) saw three different players score in the victory, with Kate Murphy picking up the win in net.

"Today, we didn't get the result that we felt was possible," head coach Shanna Caldwell said. "Elon was a good team and capitalized on the mistakes we made.

"From here," she added, "we move forward. It's been a tough non-conference season and now it's done. We battled through the last six games and learned a lot about ourselves as a team and as individuals. We feel confident as a team moving to the next part of the season and starting conference play."

The game was scoreless for the majority of the first half, though the Phoenix held a strong advantage in shots in the frame. Baldwin had three early saves and Elon missed high or wide on a number of other opportunities to keep it 0-0 into the 39th minute.

But that's when Elon cracked the scoreboard thanks to the foot of Kendall Stanley. The senior saw her first attempt turned aside by Baldwin, but Stanley stuck with it, gathered the rebound and put it into the cage for her second goal of the season. The tally, at the 38:38 mark, put the Phoenix ahead 1-0.

The score remained that way into the second half, with neither team mounting much of an attack early in the frame. But shortly after Daniela Gonzalez was carded at the 57:39 mark, the Phoenix made it 2-0. Kelly Siewers sent a pass to Nicole Dennion on the left side, and Dennion was able to convert it for her team-best sixth goal of the season at 58:05.

Just over four minutes later, the Phoenix tacked on another score. The Islanders had mounted a solid attack in the 61st minute, with a blocked Alyssa Miller shot resulting in a corner taken by Aulona Velaj. In the 63rd, though, Elon made it 3-0, with Kimmie Krauss sending a cross to the left side, where Samantha Burch put it home at 62:26. It was Burch's first goal of the year. From there, the score remained, with the Phoenix clinching the victory.

Freshman Yvette Franco was named to the Invitational's all-tournament team for her efforts on the weekend. Franco scored a pair of goals in a 4-2 loss to UNC Wilmington on Friday night, giving her a team- and Southland-leading seven on the season.

The Islanders will return to the Coastal Bend for the program's first two Southland Conference matches over the weekend. Southeastern La. will come to Dugan Stadium for a Friday afternoon game at 4 p.m., while Nicholls State visits Corpus Christi on Sunday at 1. Tickets for both games can be purchased by calling the Islanders Athletics Ticket Office at 825-BALL (2255).

"The team is really excited to see the Blue Crew and all our faithful fans out next Friday when we take on SLU at The Jack," Caldwell said. "As our first home game since classes started, we're expecting a great atmosphere."

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