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Iowa Western Rolls to 5-0 Victory in Tournament Opening Game

Nov. 18, 2013 - Iowa Western Community College backed up its No. 1 seed in the NJCAA Women's Soccer National Championship Tournament on Monday morning, blanking No. 12 College of Lake County 5-0 in the opening game.

Playing at the tournament site on host Eastern Florida State College's Melbourne Campus, Iowa Western led at halftime 1-0 in improving its record to 18-2.

Lake County, of Grayslake IL, fell to 16-4 and plays its second pool game at 10 a.m. Tuesday against Monroe College. Iowa Western plays Monroe at 10 a.m. Wednesday.

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Iowa Western's Celia Jimenez wearing number two heads the ball as Kenia Dominguez with Lake County looks on..

Iowa Western got three goals from freshman Celia Jimenez and single tallies from freshman Brianne Richards and sophomore Kasandra Anderson in the dominating performance.

Richards scored at the 22-minute, 12-second mark of the second half to give Iowa Western a 3-0 lead and Jimenez found the back of the net 25 seconds later to put the game away.

Anderson's tally made it 5-0. Lake County goalkeeper sophomore Chelsea Knaack had allowed only three goals all season coming into Monday. Also, Lake County had won 17 of its last 18 games.

Western Iowa advanced to the tournament semifinals last season. Head coach Brad Silvey said that remains a topic for this season.

"We've had this conversation quite a bit leading up to the tournament and the expectations are high for those few returning to make sure they come out and they're the role players, they're the leaders out there on the field helping set the tone early."

Silvey admitted Iowa Western struggled early on Monday.

"Nerves were very apparent in the first half," he said. "It took us quite a bit of time to settle in."

That Richards got one of the goals after Iowa Western found its groove was memorable.

"It's amazing," she said. "It's really surreal. It's what people dream of in their backyard practicing soccer."

Defensively Lake County entered the game second in team goals against average at 0.42 in 20 games. Iowa Western and Southern Maryland were tied for third at 0.47. Darton is eighth at 0.52.

Also, College of Lake County sophomore goalkeeper Chelsea Knaack brought the nation's top save percentage at .950. Knaack and Eastern Florida sophomore goalkeeper Katelyn Kern were tied for second nationally in goals allowed with three. Knaack also was second in goals against average at 0.21.