Women's Soccer

Women's soccer team finishes strong in win over Fullerton

Courtesy of On My Game Photography
Courtesy of On My Game Photography

Irvine Valley's women's soccer team played an impressive second half to pick up its first win in Orange Empire Conference play on Tuesday.

IVC's 3-1 victory over Fullerton was also its first win at home this season.

The Lasers had been on the road for five straight matches before Tuesday's contest.

Irvine Valley scored the first three goals of the second half to pull away for the win over Fullerton.

"We played down in the first half," IVC coach Joe Supe said. "We didn't have the focus or energy that we needed."

Irvine Valley was out-shot in the first half, 5-3, and Fullerton nearly got on the board in the opening minutes, but Amalia Serna's shot sailed over the top of the net.

IVC's best chance in the first half came off a header toward goal by sophomore forward Alexandra Benedict that Fullerton goalie Kennedy Heywood had to make a diving save to knock wide.

Irvine Valley sophomore goalie Yesenia Pulido helped keep the game scoreless going into the half after making a one-handed diving save on a shot by Fullerton's Marlena Carrillo.

Irvine Valley turned things around in the second half.

The Lasers got on the board four minutes into the half. A ball rolled back to freshman defender Yvette Belman near midfield and she sent a lofting kick toward goal that fell in over Heywood.

The 45-yard goal was Belman's first of the year.

Irvine Valley made it a 2-0 game in the 57th minute when sophomore midfielder Danielle Lefebvre one-timed a left-footed shot inside the near post off a pass from Benedict.

And then in the 73rd minute, freshman forward Emily Rodriguez raced in on goal and hit the post with a shot, but Benedict was in the right place to finish. It was her team-high eighth goal of the season. She went into Tuesday's match tied for the conference lead in goals.

Fullerton spoiled the IVC shutout in the 90th minute when Tatsiana Loscutoff found the back of the net with a left-footed shot that was just over Pulido.

Pulido made five saves in goal and Heywood finished with six saves.

"We were a totally different team in the second half," Supe said. "It was great to see. We had a different attitude and a different commitment. We played really well."

Irvine Valley plays again on Friday, taking on Cypress in a conference match on the road at 3 p.m.

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