UH-Hilo women’s soccer coach Gene Okamura never wants to see his team allow a goal, but considering its rousing comeback, he was sort of able to appreciate this one.
Staring at a two-goal deficit Tuesday against winless Fresno Pacific, the Vuls roared back, getting two goals from Daelenn Tokunaga for a 3-2 victory in Fresno, Calif.
“We created a handful of really good opportunities that we just needed to capitalize on,” Okamura said. “Came out a bit flat to start the match, which got us in a hole quick. Second half, we were much more organized defensively and capitalized on some chances we created.”
Each goal for UHH (5-3, 2-1) came from Division I transfers. Sandwiched between Tokunaga’s seventh and eighth goals of the season was an equalizer off the foot of Jordyn Pacheco, a Hilo High alum who scored for the second match in a row.
Almost 10 minutes after Pacheco struck – the assist went to Filippa Graneld – Tokunaga increased her PacWest-best goal total in the 65th minute. Tokunaga, a former Hawaii Rainbow Wahine, has twice as many goals as anybody else in the conference.
Waiakea graduate Maiya-Ann Serrao opened the scoring in the 20th minute for the Sunbirds (0-8, 0-3) with her first career goal.
“A great goal on us, so props to her,” Okamura said.
The Vulcans outshot the Sunbirds 20-8, putting nine on frame. Viviana Poli made four saves for UHH.
“I think we met some of our objectives,” Fresno Pacific interim coach Jaime Ramirez said. “We scored goals on a great team. I think Hilo is one of the class teams in the conference.”
The UHH men dropped their second straight on the road, 1-0, remaining winless in PacWest play.
Fellipe Souza scored in the 59th minute for Fresno Pacific (2-4, 1-1), which outshot UHH 14-11. The Vuls (2-5, 0-3) had more shots on goal (7-4).