Ashland girls outlast CA

17 years ago

The Lady Hornets continued a winning record on Monday afternoon with their second victory of the official soccer season. Energized by a 5-0 record at a tournament in Hampden the previous weekend, Ashland overran Central Aroostook with a 7-2 victory.

    Despite the heat, both teams started the first half at full tilt. They ran the ball up and down the field in a fast-paced battle of opposing offense and defense with both teams playing man-to-man strategies. The Panthers opened up scoring with a break-away goal pushed in through a crowd of blue and white by sophomore Ashley Estabrook.
However, soon after the first goal, most of the remaining time played out on the Panthers’ half of the field. Senior captain Jackie Raymond of the Hornets evened the score with a fast-break showdown against CA senior goalkeeper Robyn Graham.
Panthers junior Meagan McClay and sophomore Brittany Mosher made another push at the Hornets goal but met up against a solid defense. The Hornet attackers continued to test Panther defenders with several crossovers and near net misses. An empty-net hustle play by Ashland junior Crystal Cook brought the score to 2-1 by the end of the first 40 minutes.
In the second half, Ashland forwards persisted with relentless high-speed breaks and crosses at the Central Aroostook goal, and quickly turned over any passes into their half. Cook scored her second goal with a neat kick, followed by another from Raymond to make it 4-1.
Some aggressive defense led by Panther senior Sarah Long pushed the ball back to the Hornet half where Mosher scored Central Aroostook’s second goal. Despite some valiant defense by sophomore Sarah Michaud and senior keeper Letisha Neece, who made several saves, the Hornets stampeded the Panthers’ territory. Junior Jackie D’Ozier assisted a goal by senior captain Whitney Flint. Flint returned the favor with an assisted goal by D’Ozier. Sophomore Jessica Jimmo sprinted past her defender for the final score of the match.
The Panthers’ loss brings their season record to 2-3-1. “The whole thing’s about confidence,” said Central Aroostook coach Dave Collins about the match. “The first part of the game we worked the ball up and down the field but after the first goal … seemed to lose speed.” Collins applauded senior captains Alexandria Dame for her “solid midfield” play and defender Miranda Levesque for her attention to the ball. However, he believes his girls need to work on their short passes and control for their next match as they don’t have the speed to match teams like Ashland. On Friday, the Panthers will play Wisdom at home.
Ashland coach Peter Belskis plans on working the soccer fundamentals with his team. He felt his girls failed to put in 100 percent against Central Aroostook.
It “looked like a kicking game, not a skilled game,” said Belskis.
He knows his team has a lot of potential and speed, but they lacked control, especially in the first 20 minutes of the game. Belskis looks to his three senior captains to lead by example and pull the team together to bring their best game throughout the season.
They were scheduled to test their skills again at Easton yesterday.