After a long weekend spent in Arizona “welcoming” the Arizona Christian Firestorm to the Golden State Athletic Conference, the No. 22 Mustangs (8-1-2, 3-0 GSAC) returned to Placerita Canyon Wednesday afternoon for another conference match against the NAIA’s 19th-ranked team, Concordia (6-4, 1-2 GSAC).
TMC entered Wednesday’s match on a mission to prove that their newly-donned 22nd national ranking was no fluke, but rather an accurate representation of the Mustangs’ true potential.
“The GSAC is an every single game conference,” assessed Mustang coach Curtis Lewis. “In every game we need to make sure that we’re capable of getting results. Today, we got a result.”
Leading the charge for TMC was senior midfielder Janelle Sullivan (Riverside, CA) who got one past Eagles’ goalkeeper Bekah Garvin with an assist by Devon Goff (Canyon Country, CA) just 7:48 into play.
A little less than 17 minutes later (24:04), the Lady Mustangs extended their lead to 2-0 with a goal by Jasmine Benson (Corona, CA), assisted by Tara Struiksma (Ontario, CA).
However, a resurgent Eagles’ offense made their presence known in the second half as TMC was bombarded by 12 shots and two corner kicks. But, in keeping with the day’s emphasis on defense, the Mustangs warded off all attacks by the Eagles and capped the day with a two-goal win..
Coach Lewis further commented on the Mustangs’ 2-0 win by saying “We’ve got to give credit to Concordia. They really came out in the second half and had the better of the ball. Major credit goes to our defense. We stuck in and continued to push. This is a massive win for us, both mentally and within the NAIA standings. I’m very proud of our girls for not breaking.”
Concordia outshot TMC 18-12 and 11-10 in shots on goal. Mustang goalkeeper Ilyssa Espiritu (Bakersfield, CA) maintained TMC’s defensive efforts with 11 saves.
The Mustangs will continue to challenge the national rankings as the squad travels to Fullerton, CA, on Saturday, October 6th, to take on the Royals of Hope International. Kick-off is scheduled for noon.
The last time TMC beat Concordia was on Saturday, Oct. 23, 2010, with an identical score of 2-0.
The Mustangs now have a perfect GSAC record of 3-0, their best start since 2010.