The inaugural fall Homecoming at USC Beaufort did not go as planned for the Sand Sharks women's soccer team, as USCB fell behind early and was unable to rebound in a 4-1 loss to Webber International on Friday at Fin Land Field.
Looking for their first Sun Conference victory, the Sand Sharks (5-6, 0-2 Sun) got off to a rocky start when the Warriors scored off a set piece in the ninth minute. After a corner kick produced a flurry of activity in front of the goal, Ciera Abundez was able to pounce on a rebound off the crossbar for the game's first goal.
USCB kept it close until the 32nd minute, when the Warriors (5-1, 3-0) scored twice in a span of 20 seconds. Aubrie Strohmenger scored off an assist from Ashley Palmer for a 2-0 lead, and Palmer blasted a shot from 30 yards just a few seconds later to make it 3-0.
The Sand Sharks were able to regain some momentum going into halftime when Jessica Tooley rocketed a free kick into the upper-left corner from 25 yards for her second goal of the season.
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USCB did a better job of winning 50-50 balls in the second half and was able to generate several scoring chances that could have put the Sand Sharks right back in the game, but none panned out.
The Warriors put it away when Abundez scored her second goal of the evening off a beautiful cross from Alexis Garrand in the 78th minute.
"I think this was a little bit of a wake-up call for our players about what it means to play in the Sun Conference," USCB coach Ed Heberling said. "You have to bring your best every night in this league, or you won't compete. The last time we played this poorly, we bounced back and had three of our best games of the year. We need to do that again starting Sunday."
The Sand Sharks host Warner for another Sun Conference game at 1 p.m. Sunday at Fin Land Field.