Pearl River women's soccer upsets No.2 Holmes
POPLARVILLE, Miss. — Pearl River women’s soccer put on a show Friday night as they upset No. 2 Holmes, 2-1. The Holmes loss was its first regular-season loss since October 1, 2019, and the Wildcats first win over Holmes since 2015.
“It was a very exciting night playing the number two team in the country and coming away with a win was huge,” head coach Henrik Madsen said. “Holmes is a super team. It was a really good, scrappy game. We had the luck of the woodwork a few times, but overall, I’m very very happy.
“Going from unranked to beating the number two team in the country is a great feeling, but we still have to keep getting better every day.”
Pearl River (1-1 overall) drew first blood in the contest as people were still settling into their seats. In just the 16th minute, Aubrie Edwards (Biloxi) bullied her way through two Holmes (2-1) defenders and drilled a shot to the left of the diving goalkeeper to put the Wildcats on top, 1-0.
Pearl River’s Aníta Guðmundsdóttir (Kópavogur, Iceland.; Flensborg) made her first start in a Wildcat uniform and made sure to show off her talents in the 33rd minute.
The referee awarded a penalty to the Bulldogs.
Guðmundsdóttir dove to her left to deflect the shot and keep the Wildcats out front.
Holmes evened up the score just seconds away from the halftime whistle in the 44th minute, making the score 1-1.
The Bulldogs seemed to be in control to open the second half, but in the 70th minute the Wildcats flipped the switch.
“They started off really strong the first part of the second half, but we weathered the storm and started to gain some momentum,” Madsen said. “That’s what it is all about in soccer.”
Pearl River narrowly missed several shots down the stretch, but finally captured the big goal in the 78th minute.
After a shot smacked off the bottom of the post, it bounced straight to the foot of Emma Godfrey (Pascagoula; Resurrection Catholic) who tapped it in past the keeper, making the score 2-1.
Godfrey spends most of her time at the back of the formation as a centerback but stepped up when the Wildcats needed her most.
“It’s definitely not my normal position, but we really needed the goal,” Godfrey said. “My team really worked hard and put in the work tonight and I’m happy that I was able to put us ahead. It was a total team effort tonight.”
The score held for Pearl River as they completed the upset by a final score of 2-1.
After the game, Madsen named Guðmundsdóttir player of the game for her phenomenal showing.
“It feels amazing and I’m so happy to be on the field again playing with these girls,” Guðmundsdóttir said. “They’re all amazing and I’m happy we were able to get a win here. We all came here and put in the effort to take down this team.”
Pearl River hits the road next Saturday to take on LSU-Eunice in Pensacola, Florida. The match will begin at 7 p.m.