It was just the start to the conference season the Barton Community College women’s soccer team was looking for.
After a pair of losses to No. 3 Iowa Central and No. 11 Northern Oklahoma-Tonkawa, Barton won a couple conference games its was looking to win to open Jayhawk Conference play.
The Cougars made it a 2-0 start to the conference slate with a 3-0 win over Pratt Wednesday afternoon at the Cougar Soccer Complex. The win evened the Cougars overall mark at 2-2. Pratt remains winless at 0-4 in the Jayhawk and 0-6 overall.
“It was a good result for us,” coach Aaron Avila said. “The windy conditions and Pratt’s tactics presented some problems for us but we were able to finish enough chances to win the game.”
The win over the Beavers sets up Barton’s biggest conference game to date. Barton will hit the road Tuesday for a matchup with Johnson County. Johnson is 8-1 on the season and will be playing its first Jayhawk game.
The Cavaliers have been dominating foes so far this season. In the eight wins no one has scored more than one goal against them. The only setback was a 3-0 shutout loss to No. 19 Iowa Western.
In the win over Pratt, Barton used a 25 mph south wind to its advantage in the opening half.
The Cougars took a 1-0 lead just three minutes in when Nineth Fuentes drilled a rebound shot from Denise Cuenca. Cuenca’s shot bounded off Pratt goalkeeper Karen Duarte. Fuentes made the rebound count by ripping the ball into the net.
Cuenca played a part in Barton’s next goal as well. She slipped a thru ball past the Pratt defenders to Maria Rodriguez for the sophomore’s first goal of the season. That gave Barton a 2-0 lead just 15 minutes into the game.
The Cougars continued their scoring ways with 16 minutes left in the half. This time it was sophomore Edith Scarlett Real. Real, who scored 11 times last year to lead Barton, got her first goal of the season.
Maria Munoz put a free kick on goal. Duarte made a diving save on the ball which bounced to Real who tapped it in an open net for the 3-0 score.
That would be how the half – and eventually the game ended. Pratt, with no shots on goal in the first half, put just one on goal in the final 45 minutes. That was saved by Barton keeper Maria-Elena Garcia.
Now the Cougars get a week to prepare for the trip to Johnson.