Fish Stumble Out of the Gate; Drop NCCAA Nationals Opener

Written By: Michael Brown, Palm Beach Atlantic University SID

KISSIMMEEE, FLA.- In a battle of resilient defenses, the Mount Vernon Nazarene University women’s soccer team came out on top as they defeated Palm Beach Atlantic University on Friday afternoon by a score of 1-0 at the NCCAA National Tournament opening round.

Enlisted as the number seven overall seed in the tournament, PBA took the field against MVNU who entered tournament play as the number two overall seed.

With both teams struggling to get into an offensive rhythm for much of the contest, both defensive units along with stellar goalkeeping kept the game close throughout.

Mount Vernon broke through for the game’s only score within the 17th minute as Page Miller (Bethel, Ohio) delivered a sharp pass across to Jessica Estep (Mansfield, Ohio) who blasted the ball past PBA keeper Ashley Morrell (Lake Worth, Fla./Part Vista HS) for the score.

From that point onward, both teams would put together some scoring chances, only to see their efforts fall just short.

“I thought we possessed the ball well and the defense played very well, and we worked hard, we just could not capitalize in the offensive third of the field to put one in the back of the net,” said head coach Dwayne Whiteheart after the game.

Champions of the NCCAA East Region, Mount Vernon was very successful in keeping PBA’s offensive chances to a minimum.

“Their defense played really well against us and kept us from getting space enough to shoot; they played a little bit better than us today and probably deserved this win,” continued Whiteheart.

Now as the Sailfish turn their attention to Saturday’s slate of games, they will face off against the loser between number three-seeded Indiana Wesleyan University and number six-seeded Olivet Nazarene University. Kickoff is scheduled for 12:00 p.m.

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