GLENDALE — The Providence High girls' soccer team overcame less than ideal playing conditions to earn a Liberty League win in its season opener Monday afternoon at the Glendale Sports Complex.
The 5-1 victory against Yeshiva officially kicked off the new season for the young Pioneers, who lost nine starters from last season to graduation.
The Panthers' program is a work in progress and one that isn't up to standard just yet. It was an opponent the Pioneers didn't expect to falter against, as they used the contest as a chance to finally get their freshmen some playing time after their previous match was canceled.
"We were hoping for a win, so at the very least we got that," said third-year Providence Coach Kordo Doski, who coached the Pioneers to a 5-6-1 mark in Liberty League play last season. "We have a lot of new people, so it was good to see them play."
Fielding a team of mostly underclassmen, Doski also said he is well aware that it's going to take a lot of work as the season moves forward and the competition gets tougher.
It's off to a good start for Doski and company, however, as the season-opener couldn't have gone much better for the freshmen players who accounted for all five of Providence's goals.
The Pioneers took a 4-1 lead into halftime after a first half in which they controlled the contest and had their share of shots on goal against the overwhelmed Panthers, who started the game short-handed.
Karni Boghokian and Brittany Uyeno had two goals each for the Pioneers.
Fatigue and the frustrating rainy weather were the story in the second half, as the Panthers couldn't get anything going on their opponent's side of the field. With their comfortable lead, Providence's offense eased up.
The Pioneers defeated the Panthers in two league matches last season, 7-0, and, 1-0, respectively, and have now won five straight head-to-head meetings. The two teams will play again Thursday for the second and final time this season.
No matter the opponent, a good performance should bring the Pioneers some confidence, which is what a young squad needs.
"We are put together, work really well, and have great team work," Providence junior Elizabeth Velez said. "It's going to be a great season."