COLLEGE STATION, Texas - The No. 12 Texas A&M Aggies played their annual Maroon & White Match on Saturday, resulting in a 2-1 victory for the Maroon team. The match consisted of two 25-minute halves.
Junior Bianca Brinson broke the scoring seal in the sixth minute of action. Allie Bailey sent a corner kick in from the left side and after Annie Kunz got a piece of her boot on the service, Brinson put in the back of the net as the Maroon drew first blood. Brinson is no stranger to Maroon & White Match goals as she scored the only two goals in the last intrasquad challenge in 2011.
The Maroon took a 2-0 lead into the intermission after Bailey took a service from Shea Groom on the right flank and sent it past a sprawling White netminder in the 21st minute for the two-goal cushion.
Kunz, who started the match with the Maroon, scored the White’s only goal in the 28th minute. Kunz, who, along with freshman Ana Cruz, switched allegiances at the intermission corralled a lobbed service from one of the Aggies’ male practice players and chipped over a leaping Maroon goalkeeper to cut the lead to 2-1.
Despite trimming the lead to one goal, the White were unable to threaten to tie in the final 22 minutes.
The Maroon owned hefty advantages in shots (16-4), shots-on-goal (9-2) and corner kicks (6-0).
The 12th-ranked Aggies begin the regular season on Friday with a 7:30 pm match against No. 7 Duke in front of a friendly crowd at Ellis Field. For more information on Texas A&M soccer, log on to AggieAthletics.com or follow along on Twitter @AggieSoccer.
TEXAS A&M QUOTES
Head Coach G Guerrieri
On how the team is progressing: If you look at how this team is today compared with how far we had progressed at this point last year and the year before, we’re way beyond that. The team has progressed really nicely and that progression started back in January when we started working on the things we wanted to improve. They’ve embraced it. We’ve survived all the two-a-day workouts and I know they have big smiles on their faces, because now the next opponent we play is a really good team and they feel like they are prepared for the challenge.
On next week’s game against Duke: We are well ahead of where we’ve been at in the past. The only difference is the team we’re going to play on Friday is one of the very best in the nation. They come in ranked as high as number four in the country. The last time we played them, at their place it was 2-2 at halftime but they laid a lickin’ on us in the second half. So we have something to prove to ourselves regarding that performance.
On the experience the 10 juniors provides: That class of 2015 was a huge impact on this program from the day they stepped on campus. Now they’ve won a Big 12 trophy and they won an SEC trophy last year. They have high hopes to do a lot of good things this year. They’re very influential as far as the drive and desire of the team and that’s contagious.
On the offense: We scored three goals in 50 minutes, so just over a half. We’ll take that as being a real positive. On defense, it starts with Jordan Day. Any time you have her in goal, you’re always in the match. And we have two All-Americans in front of her with Meghan Streight and Rachel Lenz. We’re confident our defense is one of the best in the nation, so that gives you the opportunity to throw more numbers on the attack.
Junior forward Bianca Brinson
On the importance of the junior class: Now we’re upperclassmen so the underclassmen are going to be looking up to us. We need to be leaders on the field and show them the right way to do things. It’s important for them to be comfortable talking to us. If we’re leaders, they will follow, and as a team we’ll grow.
On how the freshmen are meshing: It was a bit slow at the beginning, but that’s how it is for all freshmen. They’re coming along. I’m proud of them. They’ve come a long way already.
On the offense: I think we’re doing really well. We’re doing something where we are pressing the defense a lot. I feel like we’ll get a lot of goals off that. If we work as a unit, we should score a lot of goals.