HICKORY, N.C. – It was just over a year ago when Lenoir-Rhyne tallied a late goal to draw Carson-Newman on their home turf, the only blemish on the team's record through 22 games. The Eagles held on in the first conference game of the season, beating L-R by a final of 1-0 at Bears Field.
Carson-Newman (3-2, 1-0 SAC) got off to a quick start for the third-straight match when Emilee Futrell (Wilson, N.C.) made a great defensive play at midfield, gaining control of the ball up the left side of the pitch.
With a Bear defender at her side stride for stride, the sophomore native was brought to the ground on a slide tackle and was awarded by the referee with a penalty kick. Magda Mosengo (London, England) drilled home the PK putting the ball in the bottom left side of the net with L-R (2-2-1, 0-1 SAC) goalkeeper Loren Sterling standing flat-footed. It's the junior forward's third goal of the season.
It was the second-straight game in which the Eagles scored under the first seven minutes and the third-consecutive within the first 12 minutes. The Eagles are 3-0 in games when they grab the first goal.
"We carried over the momentum from Saturday in terms of movement off the ball and our on ball possession," Coach Simon Duffy said. "We were a lot better in many aspects and it feels good to get that first conference win."
The strike from Mosengo marked the first penalty kick goal for C-N since Lara Hallgrimsdottir (Kopavogur, Iceland) struck the back of the net against Coker on Oct. 28 in a 5-0 win.
The Eagles put pressure on Sterling and the Bears all night long finishing the first frame with nine shots, seven of which were on goal. C-N ended the match with a total of 16 shots, nine of which needed Sterling's assistance who was solid all the way through the 90th minute. Duffy's squad also held the advantage in corner kicks 7-3, the highest total so far this season.
Jackie Burns (Cookstown, Northern Ireland) collected her 26th career clean sheet as an Eagle grabbing four saves in her second-straight win since returning from International duty. The junior netminder took over second all-time in South Atlantic Conference history passing Emily Campbell of former SAC member Presbyterian who played from 1993-96. Burns needs just one more shutout to become the league's all-time record holder, needing to pass former Wingate Bulldog Alexis Jones who sits at 26.7 from her 2014-17 career.
"Would've loved more goals but equally happy with the shutout," Duffy noted. "What Jackie has been able to do here has been tremendous and she made a big difference once again."
The Eagles still trail in the all-time series 13-19-3 but end a skid in which the team had lost seven of the previous nine meetings. Despite the struggle against the Bears for nearly the last decade, the program now owns a 28-3-2 record against conference opponents over the last three regular-season meetings outscoring league foes 102-23.
Including tournament matches, the record improves to 37-3-2 with a difference in scoring of 122-25.
"We are 3-2 on the season but four have been on the road," Duffy added. "L-R is probably the toughest opponent in the conference to open up that schedule with and they played a heck of a game tonight. It's not easy to win in their place."
Carson-Newman will await word on Saturday's game scheduled at Newberry due to the threat of Hurricane Florence. For all news and updates, follow along on Twitter at @CNathletics or visit cneagles.com.