Junior foward Christina Sahly scored the lone goal in Illinois' exhibition match against Cincinnati.
Aug. 14, 2009
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The Illinois soccer team won its only exhibition match of the year on Friday, defeating Cincinnati 1-0 in a preseason tune-up at the Illinois Soccer Stadium. The match was played in three, 30-minute periods. Junior forward Christina Sahly scored the game's lone goal in the 68th minute.
With Sahly wide on the flank, sophomore midfielder Marissa Mykines slotted a ball through the Bearcats' defense, pitting Sahly one-on-one with goalkeeper Ashley Daniels. Sahly then beat Daniels, scoring to the far post for the game-winner.
Sahly led the Illini with three shots in the game, and was able to capitalize on her third attempt after a near-miss midway through the opening period. After a perfect cross from freshman forward Niki Read, Sahly was wide open in front of the goal, but her shot was high. Junior defender Danielle Kot also nearly had a goal in the first period, shooting just high on a free kick from just outside the 18-yard line.
"We saw bits and pieces of what we've been working on the past two weeks," Illini head coach Janet Rayfield said. "It was what you expect out of preseason - there were some very positive moments, but we also saw some of our weaknesses. Some of our freshmen showed they can play at this level, which is exciting. There is a lot to accomplish next week before we play Illinois State but we're ready to get started."
For the game, Illinois out-shot Cincinnati eight to seven, while the Bearcats owned a commanding seven to two advantage on corners. Freshman goalkeeper Steph Panozzo was tested in her 30 minutes of play, recording three saves in the final period. Senior goalkeeper Alexandra Kapicka started the match, recording one save in the first two periods.
#17 Illinois officially opens the 2009 season next Friday, Aug. 21 in hosting Illinois State at 7 p.m. at the Illinois Soccer Stadium.