WALLA WALLA - It was a happy beginning for new coach Heather Cato as her Whitman College women's soccer team booted three goals in the final four minutes to roll past Eastern Oregon 5-1 Saturday afternoon in La Grande.
Junior Marisol Fonzeca drilled home what proved to be the game-winning goal, giving Whitman a 2-1 lead with just under four minutes left in the first half.
The game, which was the season opener for both schools, stayed close in the second half until sophomore Julianne Masser scored with four minutes left for a 3-1 Missionary lead.
The rout was on 20 seconds later when first-year sophomore Marisa Poorboy scored to make it 4-1 Whitman. First-year teammate Kelsey Roehner, who got the assist on the play, tallied Whitman's first goal in the 14th minute.
Masser, assisted by Poorboy, struck again with just over a minute remaining to complete the scoring.
Junior keeper Lauren Brougham went the distance in the net for Whitman, collecting six saves against 22 Eastern Oregon shots.
Whitman was credited with 14 shots, ten of them coming in the second half. Poorboy led the way with four scoring, while Masser finished with three.
The host squad took an early 1-0 lead when Mauriana Gonzalez scored 10 minutes into the contest, but it was all Missionaries from there.
Whitman continues non-conference play on Thursday, Sept. 9, against Northwest University in Kirkland, Wash.
The Missionaries head back to Walla Walla for their 2010 home opener at noon Saturday against Northwest Nazarene.