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No. 21 Rutgers opens season with 3-0 victory over Loyola Marymount

<p>Sophomore midfielder Nicole Whitley</p>

Sophomore midfielder Nicole Whitley

The Rutgers women's soccer team got the 2017 season starting with a bang, defeating Loyola Marymount by a score of 3-0 at Yurcak Field on Friday afternoon.

A familiar face was back in between the pipes for the No. 21 Scarlet Knights, as junior Casey Murphy returned to the team after spending the 2016 season playing for the United States U-20 Women's National Team. The star goalkeeper had 4 saves in 90 minutes of action.

But it was the youngsters who stole the show in the season opener, as true freshman Alaysia Lane opened up the scoring with a goal in the 23rd minute to put her team up 1-0.

Sophomores Carina Hendley and Taylor Aylmer combined for a goal in the 36th minute to put the Knights up 2-0, with Hendley knocking it in off the pass from Aylmer.

Rutgers kept up the pressure in the second half, as true freshman Amirah Ali scored a one-timer from a Nicole Whitley set piece. Whitley, a sophomore midfielder, was the 2016 Big Ten Freshman of the Year and hasn't missed a beat.

The Knights were out-shot by a 9-6 margin, but all 6 of their shots were on target, while the Lions missed the mark on 5 of their 9 attempts.

In addition to Murphy, junior midfielder Adora Moneme was the only other Rutgers player to be on the pitch for all 90 minutes.

The Knights are back in action on Sunday afternoon against in-state foe Monmouth at Yurcak Field.

For updates on the Rutgers Women's Soccer team, follow @TargumSports on Twitter.

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