By: Kimberly Fisher
FRESNO, Calif.- The Fresno State soccer team opened up its 2014 season with a 2-1 (OT) home win against Eastern Washington in Bulldog Stadium on Friday evening.
Bulldog sophomore Ariana Holmes made a deep overhead throw in front of the goal and Eastern Washington's M'Kenna Hayes knocked it in for an own goal, five minutes into extra time.
Extra time wins seem to be a consistent pattern continuing on from last year, but the Bulldogs came out on top to conclude the first game of the 2014 season.
"We definitely had a few of those last year," Zwaschka says. "To be honest we would prefer to put those to bed but if we're in those situations, of course this is how we want to finish."
The Bulldogs' first goal was scored by senior Jaycee Bingham in the first half at 22:57 remaining. Being the lone senior on the field, Bingham showcased her determination to begin a successful season with five attempted shots on the night, the most on both sides.
"I was trying to keep my emotions in because I knew we had to keep playing," Bingham says. "It was just so surreal, senior year, season opener and scoring that goal."
With Fresno State and Eastern Washington both welcoming new staff members as well as players onto their squads, tonight's match was a building block to what 2014 has in store. After a goal scored in the first half, the Eagles managed to hold the `Dogs for the rest of regulation as well as scored in the beginning of the second half to tie it up.
After a shot sailed high of the goal in the final seconds of the second half, the `Dogs and Eagles headed into extra minutes where sophomore Ariana Holmes utilized her strength to place the ball in front of the goal where it was knocked in with five minutes still remaining on the clock.
The Bulldogs walk away with the win from this aggressively played, extended game. Bingham's aggressiveness and Holmes's strength played key roles in tonight's win over Eastern Washington but the team as a whole managed to play as a unit to get the victory in what was the first game played against an opposing team.
"I think that the freshman definitely played a big part," Zwaschka said. "We had two in the starting lineup and the way I spoke to the whole bench before the match was the idea that we need everybody. I challenged everybody to make sure they stayed focused so when they came on they could contribute and make a difference and loads of freshman did today, so we're thrilled with that."
The `Dogs concluded their season opener with a win but now gear up to take on the Gonzaga Bulldogs this Sunday. Be back at Bulldog Stadium at noon for what will be the second game of Fresno State soccer's 2014 season.
"Be Bold!" - The official home of the Fresno State Bulldogs is 940 AM ESPN Radio.
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