SOUTH HOLLAND | Illiana Christian freshman goal keeper Mikinsey Pruim came up with what became the game-winning save with three minutes remaining in the Vikings non-conference match with Bloom Township.
The Vikings used a first-half goal to overcome the Blazing Trojans 1-0 Monday afternoon at Paarlberg Park.
Eighteen minutes into the first half, Illiana Christian sweeper Anne Bruce sent a deep pass to forward Marih Alicea who finished the play for the lone goal of the game. The Vikings were able to dominate the first half, while Bloom Township came alive in the second half and had plenty of offensive chances but could not finish at the net.
"I just saw an open goal, and I ran towards it and took the shot," Alicea said. "I think we really worked together and played as a team, and we won the game."
Illiana Christian's Pruim finished with eight saves, including a kick save on a breakaway chance by Bloom as the second half drew to a close.
"We got a little weak in the second half," Pruim said, "but we stuck together. We did really well as a team today."
Bloom Township (5-4) has struggled with offense this season, and Monday was more of the same. Bloom keeper Maria Narcisi made seven saves.
"I have to say it's kind of frustrating," Bloom coach Kelly Gutierrez said. "In a couple of games, we've had a number of opportunities, and we can't figure out how to finish. The teamwork is coming along nicely. We just can't seem to get the ball in the back of the net."
Illiana Christian coach AJ Turkstra was happy with the Vikings' win despite a drop off of play in the second half.
"That game could have really gone either way," Turkstra said. "They carried the play in the second half, and we carried the play in the first half. It was a tale of two halves, and we got one."
Illiana Christian (4-3) has found a solid defensive sweeper in junior Anne Bruce, and Bruce feels the young team just needs to stick with the basics.
"This being a young team, I think we need to work on the basics a bit," Bruce said. "Just basic passes and connecting those passes. What we have now is working pretty well for us."