Rainbow Wahine remain unbeaten
Taryn Fukuroku helped Hawaii prove its first win against Duquesne was no fluke.
The junior forward joined Natasha Kai as the only Hawaii players to have goals in at least four consecutive games as she scored with less than 90 seconds remaining to help the Rainbow Wahine defeat the Dukes 2-0 yesterday at the Waipio Peninsula Soccer Park stadium.
Kori Lu and Nicole McClure each played a half in goal to combine on Hawaii's third shutout of the season.
"We beat a very good team twice," Hawaii coach Pinsoom Tenzing said. "We'll take that."
The Rainbow Wahine found a little more success Friday night in a 5-2 win over the Dukes (3-3).
"We were not as explosive," Tenzing said. "But I thought (Duquesne) played very well against us today."
Hawaii's 5-0-1 record to open the season is its best start in nine years. The Wahine have outscored their opponents 18-5 during that stretch and scored at least two goals in every game.
Fukuroku's team-leading fifth goal of the season came after she intercepted a goal kick by Duquesne goalkeeper Brittany Findley.
Before Findley could move back into position in the goal, Fukuroku launched a shot from 30 yards out that was all net.
Tehane Higa scored the Rainbow Wahine's other goal in the 19th minute when she scored off of a corner kick by Ambree Ako.
"We need to have more people in the penalty box when the crosses are coming in," Tenzing said. "We've got big, strong headers and we're getting away with it right now, but against stronger teams we're going to have problems."
The Rainbow Wahine will encounter those tougher teams beginning this weekend when they hit the road for the first time this season.
They will play at Cal State Northridge on Friday and nationally ranked UCLA on Sunday.
"It's a lot tougher because you don't have that fan support," senior midfielder Jessica Domingo said.
Domingo will be looked at to lead a young team on the road for the first time. She is one of just two seniors who started yesterday. The Rainbow Wahine will have three starting freshmen making the first road trip of their careers.
"Going on the road can be overwhelming, but I'm not worried about our freshmen," Domingo said.
The good news for Hawaii is it seems to be nearing full strength after a slew of injuries. Mari Punzal returned to the starting lineup this week after missing a game last Sunday.
Rainbow Wahine seniors Shawn Higa and Koren Takeyama also made their first appearances of the season against the Dukes. Both had been recovering from offseason injuries.