Five different players scored goals as the defending Class 7A State runner-up Bryant Lady Hornets opened the 2019 season with an impressive 5-0 win over the perennial Class 6A powerhouse Searcy Lady Lions at Bryant Stadium Tuesday night.
“They’re a solid team. They gave us a great game,” said Lady Hornets head coach Nicole Inman. “For our first game against somebody else, it was good for the girls to be pressured. Searcy offers a lot of pressure and they’re coached really well. They didn’t stop. It was a very physical game so kudos to them for working that hard. They made us have to work harder to get the ball.
“We had some good shots, good creation” she added. “I think for our first go at it, it was good.”
The Lady Hornets grabbed a 2-0 lead in the first half. Alyssa Fason and Lauren Heath had the goals, both off assists from Ashton Inman.
The Lady Hornets had taken 12 shots in the half. As with most of the game, the action was all on Bryant’s end.
In the second half, Rachel Studdard added to the lead off a free kick from about 25 yards out.
“It was a great shot, upper right-hand corner inside the post,” Coach Inman mentioned.
The fourth goal came on a penalty kick with Mary Catherine Selig knocking it in.
“We had the opportunity to feed some other players in and see how our depth. They did really great. And we got a goal with about five minutes left. I was happy it was one of my seniors.”
That was Sierra Edelmann. “It was in the middle of the box,” Inman said, “bounced off the keeper. Something else happened then she had the rebound to put it in.”
Bryant keeper Addison Funk only had to field one shot attempt as she and the defense smothered the Lady Lions.
“They did pretty well tonight,” Inman acknowledged. “Ashlyn Thompson, Rachel Studdard, Abbey Inman and then — last year, I had Jillian Colclasure playing but she got hurt. She’s back but she hasn’t really had a chance to practice yet. So, Maggie Murray started and played the whole game. She did really well.
“I’m very fortunate to have a couple of defenders on the bench who have been practicing really hard and doing some stuff,” she noted. “So, I felt pretty good about putting her in.”
Bryant hosts Benton this Friday in another non-conference rivalry match.