The Campbell University women's soccer team had to wait a while longer than it had anticipated to get the 2011 season underway, but the team came away with the end result it had hoped for all along. The Camels scored five second-half goals en route to a 5-0 victory over the Hornets of Delaware State on the artificial turf of Alumni Stadium. The match had originally been scheduled for Friday night, but was postponed until early Saturday morning due to severe lightning and rain in the Dover, Del. area the previous evening.
The match remained scoreless at the half as the Camels were unable to capitalize on six first half shots and five corner kicks. "We took time to get used to the turf," head coach Todd Clark said about his team's first half play. "We spoke at half-time about our shape in central midfield and how to best capitalize on our set-piece opportunities, so we were really happy as a staff to see those two points pay off (in the second half).
The Camels responded to the half-time speech and came out firing on all cylinders in the second half. Campbell got on the scoreboard at the 56:45 mark when freshman Ashley Clark tallied the first goal of her collegiate career. Ryann Torrero and Kirsty Meyer assisted on the goal to give the visitors a 1-0 advantage.
The Camels increased their lead to 2-0 following a goal by redshirt-junior Kirsty Meyer in the 63rd minute as Meyer took a cross from senior Pirjo Leppikangas and converted from five feet in front of the goal.
Junior midfielder Lauren Kuklenski scored the second goal of her collegiate career at the 70:48 mark off of a free kick from the right side to open the lead up to a three goal margin.
Senior midfielder Marisa Muller made sure that the return to her home state was a happy one for all involved. The Wilmington, Del. native concluded the scoring with two goals within a six-minute span of each other. Muller first scored on a free kick from the right side and then gave CU its 5-0 margin of victory while scoring off a corner kick with five minutes remaining.
"Marisa Muller had a career day in front of her Delaware fans so it was a great experience," coach Clark said about his senior's homecoming. Clark felt that his team responded well to the adverse conditions it faced in the season opener. "After driving seven hours, sitting through a storm delay, scrambling to find hotel rooms up here and then playing at 9:30 a.m., to get a win, any win, is exciting."
The Camels improve to 1-0 overall and will travel to the University of Maryland – Baltimore County to face off against the Retrievers on Sunday afternoon. First kick is scheduled for 1 p.m. Delaware State drops to 0-1 after its opener, and will host Binghamton on Sunday afternoon.