Lady Chanticleers win home opener in 3-0 shutout of FMU

Despite a season-opening loss to non-conference foe Kentucky on Friday, Coastal Carolina was looking to rebound with its season, home-opener Sunday night against Francis Marion University.

That is exactly what the Lady Chanticleers did, striking early and often for a 3-0 win in Conway.

Anna Lowe started the scoring for CCU with a header off of a corner kick from Maddie Phillips at the 16:39 mark. Phillips added a second assist at the 26:33 point on a free kick, as Rylie Johnson put the header in past FMU keeper Taylor O’Berry.

Sophomore Kacey Kelley contributed the third and final goal of the game at 51:24 in the second half. Freshman Fia Jonsson had the assist on a through pass to Kelley.

“The team got me a lot of opportunities up front to get the corners. I am not sure how many I took,” said Phillips following the win. “They just kept getting those rebounds off the others girls which helped a lot. I got the free kick, and I forgot how it came, but I always take the short ones, and it was just a perfect ball and Riley was right there on the backside. We practice that so many times in practice.”

With a mixture of youthful talent and returning experience, Coastal Carolina is led by Phillips, Kelley and Johnson, junior keeper Megan Spencer and Lowe. Spencer had four saves in the win for CCU.

Paul Hogan, who is in just his second season with Coastal, has a deep pool of talent in his second freshmen class. Those include Megan Wagner, Jonsson and Camille Christie, among two others that CCU has steady, high hopes for in 2012. He commented on the performance to start 2012 at home after the game.

“Today, we posted the kids a challenge of a ten-hour bus ride coming back from Kentucky, playing a really good team there, and get a result tonight and the kids did,” Hogan said. “We asked them to do certain things before the game to get more corner kicks, and try and be more aggressive that way.

“We scored off one corner, and we scored off another set piece. I thought it was a good performance. It was a good start. For us right now, I am thinking in terms of a process.”

Eighteen different players saw action against Francis Marion. CCU finished the game with 16 shots, including six on goal. Eight difference Lady Chants had a shot in the contest. Francis Marion finished with five shots, with four being on goal. Coastal added 10 corner kicks to that of three by the Lady Patriots.

Coastal (1-1) returns to action next Sunday, Aug. 26 at 2:30 p.m. when they play host to Western Michigan. The game is part of the Coastal Carolina Soccer Classic. College of Charleston plays Western Michigan on Friday, Aug. 24 at 5 p.m. to kick off the weekend.

Photo by Joel Beachum

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