COLLEGE STATION, Texas – The No. 19 Texas A&M Aggies had three different players notch their first goals of the season in a 3-1 win over the Arizona State Sun Devils at Ellis Field on Friday evening.
Kelley Monogue, Liz Keester and Allie Bailey all notched goals in the victory with Keester’s being the first of her career.
The Aggies drew first blood in the 18th minute. Leigh Edwards was credited with the assist off the throw-in as she found the lightly marked Monogue near the penalty box*. The junior settled the ball at her feet, turned and fired a rocket to the left of the Arizona State goalkeeper Chandler Morris to break the scoring seal.
Less than four minutes later, Keester inflated the cushion to 2-0. After a Sun Devils’ defender intercepted a pass from Shea Groom, Keester wrangled the ball away and charged into the penalty box from the right corner. Going one-on-one versus Morris, Keester launched the ball from 15 yards out to the right of Morris for the 2-0 lead.
Texas A&M (2-1-0) took the two-goal advantage into the intermission, owning an 8-4 margin in shots and 4-2 edge in corner kicks.
Arizona State (1-1-0) capitalized on an Aggies’ defensive lapse to cut the lead to 2-1 in the 52nd minute. The A&M defense played an ill-advised ball back to goalkeeper Jordan Day. The Sun Devils’ Cali Farquharson beat Day to the ball at the top of the box and chipped a shot into an empty net.
Bianca Brinson nearly gave A&M an insurance goal in the 72nd minute. She released a shot from the penalty spot to the right post, but Morris made a diving save to keep the margin at 2-1.
The Aggies were finally able to breathe easier in the 84th minute. From 25 yards out to the right of the penalty box, Karlie Mueller heaved a throw-in to the far post where she found Bailey unmarked two yards out for the goal and the 3-1 advantage.
Day went the distance in goal for the Aggies making four saves in the win. Morris made five saves, but yielded all three goals in the losing effort.
The Maroon and White owned a 16-11 edge in shots for the game, including 8-5 in shots-on-goal. Texas A&M also held a 7-4 lead in corner kick opportunities.
Texas A&M returns to action on Sunday when the Aggies host Pepperdine in a 1:30 pm contest at Ellis Field.
* - will review footage for possible assist for Meghan Streight
TEXAS A&M QUOTES
Head Coach G Guerrieri
Opening Statement: “I think it was a really good win for us. Arizona State is going to win a lot of games this year. They came in off a big win already on the season. This was a game we can definitely build off of. We scored three goals, which we hadn’t put up that many goals all season. I thought our defense had an absolute brain-fart to give them the goal. We’ve got to learn from that and the best way to learn from that is to play against top competition. They had several excellent players. I was very pleased with the outcome.”
On being able to net three goals: “We worked all week on making our runs off the ball a little bit easier to serve. The serves needed to be better quality to really threaten the defense. A good example was the ball that Karlie threw in on the third goal to the back post. She does a great job of that. On the first goal from Monogue, we had a nice serve so we had a good pocket to attack there defense, and we did. The Liz Keester goal was pure hard work and that’s what Lizzie does. We’ll take those as thumbs-up moments.”
Junior Midfielder Kelley Monogue
On the goal: “I saw the keeper was shaded toward the right side so I shot it left. Leigh (Edwards) threw it in, Meghan (Streight) flicked it and I turned and took a touch and shot it”
Freshman Forward Liz Keester
On scoring her first goal: “It’s really exciting. I was really glad my parents could be here all the way from Tulsa to see it. It’s always great to have them here.”
On finally netting a shot after several quality attempts in prior games: “It took more focus and staying positive, knowing that it’s eventually going to come. I’m just thankful to be getting the opportunities.”