“I think [the team] feels great about it,” Stetson head coach Manoj Khettry said of the exhibition win. “For me, and the rest of the coaching staff, we’re more focused on what we need to fix.
“I think we got better in each of the 30 minute segments,” Khettry continued. “I think they were a little bit better than we were in the first 30, and then when we started to match their physical intensity and competitive spirit, then I think we were able to play a little bit [better].”
It took until that final 30 minute segment for Stetson to take the advantage. After a couple of chances by Jones and senior Alyssa Welsh that just missed, the Hatters were finally able to capitalize on a Pirate mistake when Jones put away the first goal of Stetson’s 2013 campaign.
When an Armstrong Atlantic defender misplayed a ball back to her goalkeeper, the Stetson offense fought to get to that ball. Welsh and freshman Ashni Deschenes were able to get the ball through the defense to Jones, who put it away to give the Hatters the late 1-0 lead.
“I thought we missed a lot of opportunities for final passed balls that might have put somebody in and free, but we found a way to grind, and to get a goal,” Khettry said. “[The team] was happy about that, and I think that’s good.”
The Pirates, who came in ranked in the top five nationally for Division II in every poll and first in one poll, weren’t able to even the score on Friday night. Stetson came away with the 1-0 victory as senior Victoria Troccoli, junior Amber Law, and sophomore Amanda Copfer combined for the shutout in goal.
Stetson will continue its exhibition season with a home contest against St. Leo on Monday night. The Hatters will host the Lions at the Athletic Training Center at 7:30 p.m. The regular season will begin on Friday, August 23 at home against Embry-Riddle.