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August 31, 2019
SILOAM SPRINGS – Rayssa Souza’s overtime goal, her second on the match, broke a 1-1 draw for Oklahoma Wesleyan and turned a promising match in which the Golden Eagles carried momentum through full time into the No. 13 John Brown University women’s soccer team’s first loss of the season on Saturday (Aug. 31) afternoon at Alumni Field.
In the final match of the annual John Brown University Classic, a tale of two halves unfolded as the sides each dominated a frame apiece. The visiting Eagles (1-1-0), stinging from a 4-0 setback to No. 19 Science & Arts (Okla.) on Thursday, came out a much more confident side as OKWU peppered the John Brown goal with eight shot attempts before the intermission.
Wesleyan nearly struck in the fourth minute when a dreadful deflection inside the JBU box rolled to the visitors’ leading scorer from a year ago, Marjolen Nekesa. Nekesa all alone, fired a shot to the bottom left post, but junior Caitlyn Logan answered the question with a brilliant diving save to keep the match scoreless.
After another Logan save, and an Anne Metz header attempt off a corner, which turned out to be a sign of things to come, Wesleyan took a 1-0 lead in the 35th minute when Daniela Ortiz’s feed from the right wing to a wide open Souza for a one-touch to the back of the goal.
Both teams attempted one more shot apiece before the bathroom break where the Golden Eagles (2-1-0) regrouped for quite a different second half.
In the second frame, the hosts enjoyed a 10-4 advantage in the shooting column, and in the 55th minute, Metz leveled the match when her head redirected a Sienna Nealon corner kick from the left flag off Wesleyan keeper Aryza Olague’s hands, the crossbar, and finally over the goal line.
Metz, now with a goal in consecutive matches, and senior Kristen Howell now share the Golden Eagle scoring race with a pair of strikes each.
John Brown would continue to push the pace as sophomore Alair Love and junior Vanessa Reynoso would lead the effort three and two shot attempts, respectively. Olague had to make three saves as seven Golden Eagle offerings missed the frame or were blocked.
Just 3:15 into extra time, an unfortunate defensive clearing skipped right to OKWU’s Taylor Gross, who immediately fired a pass that split the JBU back line and sprung Souza in on Logan all alone. Souza ended the match with a shot to the bottom left corner in the 94th minute.
John Brown finished the match with a 15-13 shooting advantage, but Wesleyan owned an 8-6 margin in shots on target. Logan was dinged with her first loss of the season despite making a season-high six saves. OKWU’s first half tally broke the Blue and Gold’s shutout streak at 214:58.
The Golden Eagles return to Alumni Field for its fourth consecutive home match on Saturday (Sept. 7) when it welcomes Columbia (Mo.) for the 7 p.m. match. John Brown dealt the Cougars a 1-0 loss last season in Columbia, Mo. on senior Jastin Redman’s second-half strike.