Haugh shines as Flashes walk away with win

Matt Lofgren

Photos taken by Jessica Yanesh and Jacob Byk

The Kent State soccer team exploded for three second-half goals in a 4-0 rout of Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis to finish out non-conference play and improve to 6-2 Friday at Zoeller Field.

The Flashes got on the board six minutes into the game as senior Gabi Ingram and sophomore Jaclyn Dutton found teammate and points leader, sophomore Jessacca Gironda on a one time shot that found the back of the net.

“Jackie beat her girl down the line and then she made a really good cross that went by her last defender to me,” Gironda said. “I was wide open and I just trapped the ball, put it on the frame and hoped for the best and it went in.”

In the 25th minute Gironda made another play after she chased down a through ball, but the Jaguars’ goal keeper came up on the ball ending the threat. Rounding out the first half the Flashes were behind in shots 8-to-3, but held a clear advantage in physical play.

In the second half something ignited the Flashes’ offense as the team ripped off two quick goals eight minutes apart —— both courtsey of freshman standout Stephanie Haugh. The first came off an impressive corner kick and the second in the 59th minute with the assistance of Dutton and junior Sara Henderson. Friday’s game marked the third straight game with a goal for Haugh.

Haugh’s goal sparked a mass substitution for the Jaguars. The team substituted every player on the field except the goalie. Even with nine new players on the pitch, the Flashes were still able to net a fourth goal in the 79th minute off the foot of Megan Repas.

“I think our finishing was obviously the most important part of our game today,” said Kent State coach Rob Marinaro. “I still think we can play better in some areas and we continue to work at producing a little bit more in 90 minutes.”

Despite letting 17 shots off for the game, senior goalie Kelly Sherwood played 77 minutes and made all three saves that came at net, halting any legitimate opportunities for IUPUI.

With this final tune up before Mid-American Conference play, Marinaro is confident that his team, with a good balance of senior leadership and young talent, will have a chance to do something special.

“I think it’s a good balance,” Marinaro said. “Our leadership has proven to be strong and they are really leading the way for our expectations, and the freshmen are following that well and it’s mixing really well.”

The Flashes will kick off conference play at home against Miami (3-2) on Friday.

Contact Matt Lofgren at [email protected] .

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