LEXINGTON, Va. – Toni Lashley scored twice and added an assist for the visiting Charleston Southern Lady Bucs, as they defeated the VMI Keydets 4-0 in Big South women’s soccer action contested Thursday afternoon at VMI’s Patchin Field.
After VMI (1-10, 0-5 Big South) had controlled the first 20 minutes of play, CSU’s (5-6-1, 3-2 BSC) Lashley got free in space in the 22nd minute, about 25 yards out and slightly to the left of VMI keeper Kirsten Hancock. The forward then played a long cross to teammate Allison Lewis, who finished at the far post to put the Lady Bucs up 1-0. Lashley then scored CSU’s next two markers, her seventh and eighth of the year, to make it a 3-0 game, and the visitors added a late goal to account for the final margin.
Despite the final score, the Keydets controlled the majority of the stat categories, outshooting CSU 12-10 and forcing Lady Buc goalie Caitlin Cody to make eight saves. The Keydets also held a 6-4 edge in corner kicks on the afternoon.
The Keydets controlled possession early, keeping the ball in their offensive end for the majority of the first 20 minutes. Allie Segura and Simone Jimenez had shots in the fourth minute, while, off counters, CSU attempted tries in the 12th and 17th minutes. That 17th minute shot was by Gina Cox, and forced the first save of the match, a stop by Hancock. The next shot try was Lewis’ goal off Lashley’s assist, which came at 21:32 and put CSU ahead, 1-0.
Lashley struck again less than two minutes later, firing a long chip to the left post. The shot from 25 yards out beat Hancock and gave the visitors a 2-0 cushion.
After a CSU try in the 25th minute, the Keydets went back on the attack. Meredith Baldasare, who was making her first career start, missed high at 25:40, and Allie Segura forced a Cody save at 32:46.
Segura was again stopped by Cody in the 27th minute, as was Kacey Hall in the 40th, as VMI had a run of four straight shots. The Lady Bucs’ Hannah Thomas misfired in the 42nd minute, and Courtney Mason rounded out the first half with another shot on goal, this one stopped by Cody was 16 seconds left in the period.
With CSU leading 2-0 at halftime, VMI held a 7-6 edge in shots, but it was Cody’s eight saves that had made the difference.
The second half got underway slowly, as neither team had a shot for the first 7:45, a run that was stopped when Hall put a shot on the CSU net at 52:45. Cody was up to the task, however, and the game’s next shot on goal was put into the back of the net. Lashley and Rebecca Hollstegge ran a combination play, a give and go, inside the CSU offensive zone. The play that got Lashley room just on the left side of the field, and she was able to put the resulting shot by VMI keeper Mackenzie Harrmann to make it a 3-0 contest. The goal pushed Lashley’s season total to eight.
The teams continued to go back and forth, generating four corner kicks over the next 8:10, with the next shot being a Sydnie Bligh attempt that went high in the 64th minute. Cody then stopped Baldasare in the 65th and Segura in the 68th, and the visitors capped the scoring in the 80th minute.
Chelsea Frankeny got free 20 yards out, dribbled in and fired a shot to the far post, beating Harrmann for her third goal of the year and a 4-0 Charleston Southern advantage. Cody made one additional save, a stop on Erika Boggs in the 84th minute, to preserve the final margin.
"My compliments to CSU for the four-goal win against us this afternoon,” said VMI head coach Bryan Williams. “I felt, however, that our performance as reflected in the box score showed the effort we put in today - Outshooting CSU 12-10, beating them in corners 6-4 and forcing them to make eight saves. This was another frustrating match for me, seeing my team play some excellent soccer, both defensively and offensively, and yet, coming up on the wrong side of the score. I felt we had great performances from the back line, led by Bridgette Pouliot, Erica Putney and Sarah Putney, as well as terrific midfield play from Courtney Mason, Kacey Hall and Allie Segura. I also was pleased today with the play up top by Meredith Baldsare and Simone Jimenez."
VMI women’s soccer will return to action Saturday, taking on Coastal Carolina at Patchin Field. Game time is set for 11 a.m.