Garden City women start season with win

GCCC Sports Information Services

After going almost a year and a half without coaching in a single game, Corey Bryant was chomping at the bit. Who could blame him? And on Friday, his Garden City Community College women's team took the field for the first time in more than 400 days-wasting little time in giving the second-year coach a win in his return to the sideline.

Miranda Cardona's goal nearly halfway through the first half put the Broncbusters ahead, and the defense pitched a shutout over the final 69 minutes as Garden City beat Neosho 1-0 in their regular-season opener at Broncbuster Stadium.

"The girls played with a lot of heart and determination," Bryant said afterwards. "They wanted to open the season on a high note, and that's exactly what they did."

Truthfully, the match could have been even more one-sided. Adamaris Medina's 40-yard free kick was online but knocked down by goalkeeper, Shyanna Reich in the 24th minute. Prior to that, Cardona misfired on a shot inside the box, pushing it wide left. But the Broncbusters finally broke through with the wind at their back just minutes later when Giovanna Martinez slipped the ball to a streaking Cardona, who fired it off the chest of Neosho defender Aaliyah Martin Rubio before regathering possession and flipping a shot into the back-right corner of the goal. That one play epitomized a dribbling clinic by Cardona.

Garden City had another chance to add to their lead in the 31st minute when Naya Saenz sent a beautiful cross from the 5-yard line into the box. But Haily Enriquez's shot was blocked, and on the rebound, Martinez blasted a line-drive that rolled wide of the target.

Nonetheless, the defense carried it from there, holding Neosho without a shot attempt in the first half and to just two for the entire match as the Broncbusters won a season opener for the first time since 2014. They also snapped a five-match losing streak dating back to last season.

Garden City was at Cowley County on Monday.