Rainbow Wahine extends winning streak to three matches at Pacific

Local Sports
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The University of Hawai’i soccer squad cruised to a 5-0 road win over Pacific on Sunday afternoon.
 
“I really have to give the credit to my staff and the team for our preparation this week,” said head coach Michele Nagamine. “We came here with the mentality that this is a business trip and we took care of business. Rachael’s (Doyle)  scouting reports were spot on and Marc’s (Fournier) efforts to keep us organized on and off the field have been massive for our team. I’m so stoked to finish the weekend 2-0 on the road.”
 
The Rainbow Wahine (3-1) have now won three straight matches, and have won back-to-back road matches to begin their away schedule for the first time since 2013. The 5-0 score is also the largest margin victory over an NCAA Division-I opponent under Nagamine. The Tigers (2-4) came into the match winning their last two contests, but have now lost four of six to begin the 2018 campaign.
 
The UH offensive onslaught started early and came quickly with freshman midfielder McKenzie Moore scoring her first-career goal in the seventh minute off an assist by fellow freshman defender Natalie Daub. Except for the two golden goals scored in the two previous overtime wins, Moore’s goal gave the Rainbow Wahine their first official lead of the season in game action.
 
The lead doubled for UH nine minutes later as senior midfielder Raisa Strom-Okimoto kept up her torrid pace of scoring, as she found the net in the 16th minute for her team-leading third goal of the season. Strom-Okimoto has already tied her goal total from last year. As a sophomore in 2016, she netted six goals for a career-high.
 
After making it 2-0 in favor of the Rainbow Wahine, freshman forward Daelenn Tokunaga got in on the fun with her first-career goal at the 18th-minute mark to make it 3-0, taking an assist from sophomore midfielder Leialoha Medeiros. The presence of Medeiros, the Makawao, Maui native, would be felt again though, later on in the match.
 
With first-half scoring being the theme of the day, sophomore defender Cristina Drossos played add-on in the 31st minute with her first career goal with an assist from another sophomore in midfielder Izzy Deutsch off a corner kick, giving the Bows a 4-0 lead. In 16 matches a year ago, as a defender, Drossos only attempted one shot on goal, fast forward to this season, she matched her total for shots on goal, this time registering a goal.
 
The aforementioned Medeiros popped up again, picking up her second goal of the season to put UH up 5-0 in the 67th minute with an assist credited to senior midfielder Sarah Lau, the fifth of her career.
 
Even though the offensive showcased its self throughout the afternoon, equally as impressive was the performance by redshirt goalkeeper Alexis Mata. She picked up her second shutout of the season and the fourth of her career. Her five saves headlined the defensive performance, but it was her athletic ability in the closing minutes of the match, that kept the Tigers at bay.
 
As the Tigers worked to pick up a goal in the final five minutes of action, a free kick from the left side of the box put the shutout in danger. As the kick sailed into the group of Tigers and Rainbow Wahine, a Pacific player jumped, connecting on a header that was punched out of the air by a soaring Mata, keeping the Tigers scoreless for the eventual 5-0 win.
 
UH will return home to the island of O’ahu as they’ll await the arrival of UC San Diego. The Tritons will faceoff with Hawai’i Pacific on Tuesday before matching up with the Rainbow Wahine on Friday at 7 p.m. HT.

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