McIninch goals, Lady Trojan defense key opening victory
Three goals from Abby McIninch and a solid defensive effort propelled New Kent’s Lady Trojans to a 5-0 soccer season-opening conquest of Northumberland’s invading Indians.
New Kent dominated as most of the March 13 match played out in Northumberland territory. The hosts limited the Indians to only four shots on goal for the night while taking 32 shots themselves. The Lady Trojans kept pressure off keeper Laura Smith who was pressed into service only on two occasions to make saves.
“What a great way to start the season,” a jubilant Chad Honeycutt, the New Kent head coach, said afterward.
“We’ve been building and building this program up and now the pieces are starting to fall into place,” he said. “We have good senior leadership and are getting help from our freshmen. I think we’re in for a very exciting season.”
Ten minutes into the contest, New Kent took the lead for good as freshman Anna Black rolled a shot under Indian keeper Kasie Cockrell for a 1-0 lead. McIninch, after coming close on a trio of shots earlier, broke through 10 minutes later by lofting a shot into the corner beyond Cockrell’s reach to up the count to 2-0.
McIninch then helped create a 4-0 halftime lead, first by intercepting an Indian goal kick and hammering a shot off Cockrell and into the goal at the 10:45 mark.
Just over three minutes later, a tripping call on the visitors’ Sarah Duncan set up McIninch for a penalty shot. Cockrell deflected the effort, but McIninch alertly picked up the ball as it caromed off the keeper and blasted her third score into the net.
At the other end and except for an Indian direct free kick that sailed high, Smith spent the first half as a spectator. That is until the visitors were awarded a penalty kick in the final seconds. But Smith only had to watch as the Indians’ Bett Harrison drove the ball wide left.
Late in the second half, Nicole Kettle closed out the scoring for New Kent, looping a high shot over Cockrell and into the net. For the game, Kettle was credited with two assists while Cristen Odom and Kaylee Cossaboon each registered one.
Cockrell had 11 saves for the Indians.