Women’s College Soccer
Rider University 1, Seton Hall University 0
SOUTH ORANGE, NJ— George Joseph Kresge, aka the Amazing Kreskin, is a Seton Hall graduate who is famous for making predictions. Rider head soccer coach Drayson Hounsome might be able to give Kreskin a run for his money.
“The game went as I thought it would,” said Hounsome, after the Broncs won the 2014 season opener at Seton Hall Monday night. “Great win. We played well. Seton Hall is a good technical team who wants to possess the ball. When we stopped them from possessing the ball we were able to control our game. The game went as I expected. We knew it was going to be close. We knew it would be a physical contest, when you play a BIG EAST team.”
Rider (1-0) sophomore Priscilla Santos (Glendora, Calif./Glendora) scored just 6:10 into the game for the only goal of the contest..
“(Sophomore) Caroline Healy (Dublin, Ireland/Alexandra College) went down the right wing and served in a good cross and the ball ended up at Priscilla’s feet and she put it in the back of the net,” Hounsome said.
“The goal was off a deflection,” said Santos, who was a member of the MAAC All-Rookie team last year, finishing second on the team in goals. “I got a sloppy ball off the iron but I was able to stay composed and hit it into the corner. I could not have been able to do it without my teammates.”
Rider sophomore goalkeeper Bethany-May Howard (Glastonbury, England/Bridgwater College) made a career-high eight saves for her first shutout. “I like it when we get a shutout,” Howard said. “That makes me happy.”
“Beth made some outstanding saves for the shutout,” Hounsome said. “We lost our way for about 15 or 20 minutes where we didn’t win the 50-50 balls and we were under a lot of pressure. If it hadn’t been for our goalkeeper they might have scored a couple of goals. Beth made some great saves.”
Howard earned MAAC All-Rookie team honors last year, playing half of every game. “I really like playing the entire game,” Howard said with her strong, British accent. “It is good for my confidence. Last year we had such a young team. This year we are just an all-around stronger and deeper team. Tonight was an all-around solid performance from the entire team.”
“A lot of players played well tonight but Beth in goal was outstanding,” Hounsome said.
Seton Hall (1-1) out-shot Rider 15-10, including 8-4 in shots on goal. The Pirates had six corner kicks to Rider’s three. “Seton Hall is a good team,” Howard said. “They showed their quality. The MAAC has some quality teams but I feel if we can beat Seton Hall we can beat the teams in the MAAC.”
The victory was the second season-opening win for the Broncs in the last three years and just the third in the last eight years.
Seton Hall began the season Friday night with a 2-0 victory at MAAC-rival Marist. “Seton Hall had an advantage that they already played a game, so there is a bit more coordination with the team,” Hounsome said, “but the fact that they had to recover from having just played a few days ago might cancel that out. For our first game of the season to play a BIG EAST team and win 1-0 on the road is obviously an outstanding result.”
Rider and Seton Hall met twice before, in 2000 and 2002, with the Pirates winning both times. Seton Hall defeated Rider 5-1 in an exhibition game last year. “We got destroyed by them last year,” Santos remembered. “Winning tonight is amazing.”
The Amazing Kreskin would be proud. Coach Hounsome is.
Rider plays the home opener Friday, hosting Fairleigh Dickinson University at 5pm.