Three-goal second half lifts women’s soccer over Winthrop, 3-0
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It was a different team that emerged after half time today as the JU women’s soccer team used three second-half goals to down Winthrop at the Ashley Sports Complex, 3-0.

The Dolphins (3-3) were led by a two-goal performance from sophomore midfielder Becca Massip with sophomore Eva Leeper adding a third goal to round out the game. Junior goalie Alexa Rooney posted her second clean sheet of the season, making six saves from 11 Lady Eagle (0-2-1) shots.

“I’m very proud of the way we played defense for 90 minutes today,” said JU head coach Brian Copham. “This was a great team effort and it’s what we’ve been looking for. We scored a couple great looking goals today and it’s a great start to our home season.”

An early chance for the Dolphins came in the 13th minute after a nice turn from Hensley off a long pass from Massip. Hensley beat her defender and dropped in on goal but a late block from a charging defender stopped the sophomore’s attempt.

Junior midfielder Jessica Hurtado would threaten next for the Dolphins after several quick passes just outside the box led to a low swinging pass into the box. After a deflection, the ball found its way to Hurtado’s feet and her shot on goal was just blocked at the goal line to keep the Lady Eagles even.

The green and gold went into halftime tied, 0-0, but were outshooting the visitors, 12-5.

The Dolphins would finally get on the board nine minutes into the second half after a strong buildup of play from the midfield. Freshman forward Courtney Conrad was played in to the end line and found Massip on the far side for the strong finish past Kelsy Weavil.

JU continued to apply pressure after Massip’s first and Conrad was brought down by the last defender on her way to the goal, drawing a red card. Fink’s ensuing free kick was blocked by the wall but eventually collected by Massip and the midfielder sent a looping shot over Weavil for her second of the game in the 60th minute.

The Dolphins would score a final goal in the 85th minute on a shot from sophomore forward Eva Leeper. Leeper was played to goal with a well-weighted ball from sophomore Emily Culbreth and the A-Sun “Freshman of the Year” scored with a calm finish into the lower right corner.

The Dolphins will play their next four matches at the friendly confines of the Ashley Sports Complex starting next weekend when they face USF on Friday and Francis Marion on Sunday.