MIAMI, Fla. - The Stetson women's soccer team fell to Florida International by a score of 4-0 in Friday night's season-opener. The Hatters were unable to crack the Panther defense, and gave up a pair of goals in each half.
FIU took the advantage in the 11th minute as Chelsea Leiva received a pass from Scarlett Montoya, and finished it off by chipping past Stetson goalkeeper Victoria Troccoli. It was then Montoya who put it on herself to give the Panthers a 2-0 lead before the half with an unassisted score in the 32nd minute.
"The score wasn't indicative of the game," Head Coach Julie Orlowski said. "They took the game to us in the first 20 minutes, and we just didn't answer. We didn't handle the situation as well as we would have liked, and we spotted them an early goal."
The Hatters tallied a couple of shots in the opening frame, and recorded two corner kicks, but it wasn't enough to keep up with the Panthers on Friday. With Stetson pressing to get back in the match, FIU was able to take advantage and put a pair of insurance goals in the net to finish with the 4-0 win.
Stetson totaled six shots for the game and added three more corners in the second half. Troccoli finished with seven saves playing all 90 minutes in goal for the Hatters. Sophomore Colleen O'Kennedy led Stetson with three shots in the defeat.
"Mara Keomanivane was very impressive in her first collegiate game," Orlowski continued. "So was Autumn Matthews, who went for 90 minutes. There were a lot of bright spots. The best opportunity we had came on a corner kick where their goalkeeper had to make a couple of great point blank saves."
Returning home for the first regular season game at the newly renovated Stetson Soccer Complex, the Hatters will host Georgia Southern at 1:00 p.m. on Sunday.