PRESS RELEASE – The Masakåda shut out CNMI 6-0 in the opening match of the Women’s East Asian Cup preliminary competition at the Leo Palace Resort Guam main field Tuesday.
“The key was we were confident but not overconfident coming into the game,” said Simie Willter, co-captain of the Masakåda. “Before the game, we read aloud a quote from Mia Hamm – ‘you can’t just beat a team, you have to leave a lasting impression in their minds so they never want to see you again.’ We wrote the quote on a sheet of paper, cut it up and gave a piece to each team member to put in their socks during the game.”
The Masakåda began pressuring the CNMI defense early with quick passing to forwards to take shots. Arisa Recella opened the scoring gate for Guam connecting on a pass in the center from Paige Surber. Moments later, Tanya Blas-Cruz sent a high cross to Surber, who knocked in her first goal of the match.
Surber continued to push through CNMI’s last line of defenders, meeting goalkeeper Jhaneeka Atalig on several occasions. On one occasion, Atalig dove to stop a shot by Surber right outside of the penalty box, awarding the Masakåda a free kick. Surber knocked in her second goal of the game with a shot to the right post.
Surber completed her hat trick later in the half to extend Guam’s lead to four and Andrea Odell scored Guam’s final goal of the half heading a cross from Meagan Speck for the score.
CNMI turned up the defense in the second half forcing the Masakåda to take off-balance shots or stopping Guam shots on goal; however, Willter prevented a second-half shutout by CNMI with a goal from long-range that snuck into the goal behind Atalig.
The weeklong EAFF tournaments – the East Asian Cup and the Women’s East Asian cup, continues with the Matao, Guam men’s national team against CNMI at 4 p.m. at Leo Palace. The CNMI women take to the pitch against Hong Kong Wednesday and their male counterparts face off against Macau Friday.
Guam next plays Saturday at 4 p.m. when the Masakåda take on Hong Kong in the final match of the Women’s East Asian Cup. The Matao play the competition’s final match against Macau Sunday at 4 p.m.
Admission is free and the community is invited to watch all games. Bleachers with canopies have been set up to accommodate spectators.
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