OREM -- The Green team got production from seniors Jaime Lyons and Regan Benson and two goals from freshmen newcomers to outduel their White counterparts 3-1 in Utah Valley University's annual Green & White Exhibition at Clyde Field on Wednesday night.
The intrasquad match featured three 25-minute periods and was the preseason opener for the defending Great West Conference champion Wolverines.
"We have some great upperclassmen that bring experience and leadership to the field, and we also have some great underclassmen who came into camp prepared," said UVU head soccer coach Brent Anderson. "As a whole, I think we saw some pretty good, attacking soccer tonight with some good pace and possession."
The Green side demonstrated that very mix of veterans and rookies when it opened the scoring with 4:17 remaining in the first period. Lyons, a midfielder returning for a fifth season, played fellow senior Benson into the left side of the box. Benson drew the defense then layed the ball to Kristen Bailey-Yoo on the right side. The freshman's right-footed blast stayed just inside the near post for the match's first goal.
With the score still 1-0 early in the second period, White nearly equalized when sophomore midfielder Alexa Pulley lifted a high, left-footed shot from just inside the 18. But Green goalkeeper Jessica Duffin's outstretched right hand tapped the ball harmlessly over the crossbar to preserve the advantage.
White continued to get chances, however, and finally leveled the score just past the nine-minute mark. Junior Natalie Baker, last year's GWC Offensive Player of the Year, working in the middle of the field, found sophomore Maddie Adams sprinting into the box on the left side. Adams took one touch before slotting the ball past Duffin into the net.
Not to be outdone, Green reclaimed the lead only minutes later when Benson, just outside the final third, threaded a through-ball to freshman forward Kali Stubbs. With defensive pressure on her left side, Stubbs tucked it away with her right foot, returning the advantage to Green just before the end of the period.
Benson finished the game with a pair of assists as Green's first two goals were finished by freshmen.
"We are seeing that we have some depth on the squad. These young players can definitely earn some playing time," Anderson said.
Maintaining the offensive pressure into the third and final period, Green would finally put the game away for good when Lyons, attacking from the left side, let fly a hard, curving shot just outside the box with her right foot that flew into the far corner of the goal, making the score 3-1 with 15:42 showing on the clock.
UVU's preseason continues on Saturday when the Wolverines return to Clyde Field for the Alumni Game. Wolverines past and present will be featured in the match that kicks off at 7:30 p.m. UVU will then play its final tune-up match Monday, Aug. 13 against Westminster.
Kellen Hiser is sports information assistant at Utah Valley University. For more information on Wolverine athletics, visit WolverineGreen.com.
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