Captains Thunder Past Meredith After Long Delay, 2-0
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. -- On the second day of the Atlantic Orthopaedic Specialists Invitational, the Christopher Newport Captains and Meredith Avenging Angels battled to a scoreless draw for the first 54 minutes of action. It was then that Mother Nature took over, stalling the contest for over an hour and 15 minutes as lightning and rain swept through the area. After the delay, it was the Captains that stormed past their former conference rivals, with two goals in the remaining 35 minutes, improving to 2-0 on the season.
Playing on a neutral field on the campus of Virginia Wesleyan College, the Captains offense pressured the Angels defense from the opening whistle. CNU outshot Meredith 9-2 in the first half, putting seven attempts on frame, but was unable to break through. Kelsey Hopper, the Meredith keeper, stopped all seven shots in the first half to keep her squad locked at zero.
No one scored in the first eight and half minutes of the second half, either, before the lightning came. After sitting and waiting for 75 minutes, the teams returned to the field to attempt to finish out the game.
Play resumed and the Captains offense opened up. Within the first five minutes back, senior Emma O'Reilly had peppered Hopper with three more shots. A minute later, and Bupe Okeowo put a header on frame, saved. Another five minutes and another save by Hopper, this time on a shot by Victoria Perry. The offense was clicking, but the shots were still not finding the back of the net.
That is, until the 75th minute. After six shots on goal were turned away, the Captains finally broke through when Perry knocked home a shot from five yards out to give CNU a 1-0 lead. It was her fourth shot on-goal in the game, converting his first career goal for the Captains.
CNU would add an insurance tally in the 85th minute when junior Joy Piirto found Okeowo on a run up the right side. One step into the box and she laced a hard shot into the right, past Hopper for the second score of the game.
The Captains defense held up, as rookie goalkeeper Haley Casanova picked up her second clean sheet in as many career games, making three saves. Meredith managed just the three shots on-goal, one apiece from Victoria Tate, Samantha Siomkos and Meredith McCarty. Hopper led the Angels with 14 saves, facing 16 attempts.
Okeowo led the charge, shooting seven times with five on-goal, including the score. O'Reilly finished with five shots, and Perry added four.
CNU returns to action next weekend, as they host the Captains Classic in their home opener. They will take on Baldwin-Wallace College on Saturday, September 7 at 3:00 pm. It will follow the tournament's opener between Virginia Wesleyan and Kean at 1:00 pm.