The College of Southern Maryland Hawks women’s soccer team came out of the gates hot with an impressive season-opening 6-1 win over the Anne Arundel Community College Riverhawks on August 25 in La Plata, Maryland.
Freshman forward Gabriela Rodriguez made a name for herself in her debut for CSM, scoring four goals to lead the Hawks to the program’s first season-opening win since the 2018 season when CSM beat Patrick Henry College (now Patrick & Henry College) 6-0 on August 30.
Rodriguez registered a hat trick in the first half – scoring unassisted in the 24th, 34th, and 40th minutes – and added her fourth goal – also unassisted – just two minutes into the second half.
Freshman midfielder/forward Paola Giron and sophomore midfielder Micaiah Lloyd provided the finishing touches for CSM. Giron scored her first tally as a Hawk with an assist from Rodriguez in the 51st minute, and Lloyd found the back of the net for her seventh career goal in the 72nd minute.
CSM’s stifling defense, led by freshmen Brooklyn Vance and Brooke Portzen and sophomore Mackenzie Miller with freshman Megan Anderson in goal, allowed the Hawks to play in Anne Arundel’s half for most of the game.
CSM outshot Anne Arundel 15-7.
CSM head coach Richard Landis was pleased with his team’s performance, but still sees room for improvement in several areas.
“We played a fast, direct style of soccer – we had some truly fantastic efforts from many players and I thought everyone contributed,” Landis said. “That said, it was not perfect, but what excited me was that we could really see our potential as a team this season. In order for us to have our championship season, there are a number of things that have to happen from here on out. We need to get in better shape, so conditioning moves up the priority list for us. We need to get more physical across the board. We need to continue to learn our formation, playing style, and finally, how to press as a team.”
CSM’s next game is scheduled for September 6 against the Frederick Community College Cougars in Frederick, Maryland at 2 p.m.