By Caleb Odom
The Troy soccer team (4-5-0) made some milestones today on Friday, Sept. 20, when it defeated Gardner-Webb 3-1 at home.
The victory was Trojan head coach Chris Bentley’s 50th win and the soccer program’s 100th win.
“I think it is important for me in a sense but I’ll deflect that completely,” Bentley said after the match. “I think the girls that I have had the chance to coach, it really says more about them than it says about me.”
One could argue that Troy’s victory was never really in question because the Trojans dominated possession of the ball posting 37 shots to the Runnin’ Bulldogs’ five shots.
What told the story though was the Trojans recording 18 shots on goal to Gardner-Webb’s one which resulted in its lone goal in the 84th minute of the second half.
Freshman midfielder Necee Jennings found the net twice for Troy giving her four goals on the season.
“It was really big,” Jennings said. “We all came together and we had some times where we weren’t as focused as we could have been but it was good to get a win.”
Sophomore Kirsten Rendall gave the Trojans an early first half lead when she scored an unassisted goal in the 18th minute to make it 1-0.
Troy had many chances to score goals as the Trojans stretched out Gardner-Webb with a quicker pace of play.
“I think you can see us slowly gaining more confidence in the way we play,” Bentley said. “Whether we are attacking and creating chances or turning the ball over and winning it back right away.”
Jennings’ first goal of the day, assisted by Jasmine Fahrnbauer and Jane Latif in 77th minute, in essence put the game out of reach for Gardner-Webb.
It was in the 82nd minute when Jennings scored again, assisted by Samantha Morgan, as she kicked ball out of the goalie’s grasp towards an unoccupied goal crease to make it 3-0 Troy.
Gardner-Webb’s single goal of the game came in the 84th minute but by then it was too little too late for the Runnin’ Bulldogs.
“It’s unfortunate that we gave up that goal at the end though,” Bentley said. “I’m a little disappointed in that. I think we got complacent when we knew we had the win and we gave up a silly one. Those down the road can mean something different.”
Troy next hits the road to face Kennesaw State this Sunday, Sept. 22, at noon.
For a review preview of Trojan soccer as conference play kicks off next weekend, pick up a Tropolitan this Thursday.