Holland Leads Eagles to First Win of Season
WILMORE, Ky. - It may have taken Cassie Holland five games to get on the score sheet for the Eagles, but then again it took the Eagles (1-4) five games to put one up in the score column, too.
But Saturday, despite an hour delay and temperatures in the upper 80s, Holland and the Eagles both got what they were missing for the start of this season against Oakland City University (0-1).
"We needed this one," coach Brooke Lincoln said following the game. "It feels good to get that one in the books and for us, as a program, to get a win."
"Cassie has been playing well for us and I thought she had her way with them for much of the game," Lincoln added of Holland. "It's not a position she is used to playing this season. It worked out well."
So well, in fact, that Holland assisted on the first three goals for the Eagles in the game, propelling the team to a 4-2 victory- their first of the season and the first in head coach Brooke Lincoln's career.
Andrea Hasik, Shanda Painter, and Jenna Bird were the beneficiaries of Holland's passing as they scored in the 23rd, 53rd, and 73rd minutes, repectively. Bird--who entered the game with just over 20 minutes remaining--is credited with the game winner in the 73rd minute.
The Eagles and Oaks were forced to wait nearly an hour after the originally scheduled start of 2 p.m. after a mix up in terms of officials.
An hour later, around 3:00 p.m. the opening whistle blew and the Eagles started off with plenty of energy.
"Our energy level was just really high all afternoon," Lincoln added. "It was probably the most energy we've had all season."
The energy led to plenty of chances for the hosts, but none better than the chance off the foot of Andrea Hasik in the 23rd minute for the Eagles' first lead of the game and the season.
A foul by an Eagles' defender in the 27th minute gave the Oaks' Christina Haag an opportunity to put home a penalty shot for the 1-1 tie that went into the break.
The Eagles' found the right combination early in the second half as Holland dished out her second helper to freshman Shanda Painter in the 53rd minute and a 2-1 lead.
Bird's tally came in the 73rd minute, again from Holland, off a one touch on a centering pass. The goal was Bird's first on the season.
The goal seemingly put the Eagles in perfect position to cruise to the finish as they controlled the tempo through the second half, but the Oaks would respond less than ten minutes later.
After a shot from the Oaks and save from goalkeeper Lizzie Hoffa (five saves), the Oaks fired another quick shot off the rebound past Hoffa and in for the score, pulling the visitors to within one with eight minutes to play.
The Eagles, however, didn't want this to be loss number five and freshmen duo Maddye Hahn and Shanda Painter would hook up in the 88th minute to seal the deal.
"You take a look out there after they pull to within one and we have three freshmen carrying a lot of the load," Lincoln commented, referring to the youth on the field at the time of Oakland's second goal. "I was proud of the way these young girls carried themselves."
The Eagles won't have long to reflect on their first win of the season. They travel to St. Catherine on Monday for their second game in three days. Gametime is slated for 4 p.m.