Chieftains open season with victory

Published 11:30 pm Thursday, March 31, 2011

Bre Williams had a pair of goals in Dowagiac’s 3-1 win over Bangor on Thursday. (The Daily News/Ron Harner)

Bre Williams had a pair of goals in Dowagiac’s 3-1 win over Bangor on Thursday. (The Daily News/Ron Harner)

Dowagiac opened the girls’ soccer season with a triumphant 3-1 victory over visiting Bangor on Thursday night.

“It was nice to get the win in our first game of the year, but no doubt we have a lot to work on after how we played,” noted Dowagiac coach Mike Williams. “The first half was not good as we played their game of kickball as our nerves in being such a young team played a role at the beginning.”

The Chiefs played without a senior in their lineup and failed to capitalize on the first 10 shots as junior Bre Williams and sophomore Brooke Parritt each had golden opportunities to break up the scoreless duel in the first 20 minutes.

Williams dented the net with 14:30 showing on the clock with a 15-foot shot that eluded Viking sophomore goalie Lorena Sanchez-Saucedo, who had eight saves in the first half, into the far corner.

Bangor was still without a shot, but the goal sparked the young Viking strikers as they made junior Alyssa Fritz make her first save of the evening after 27 minutes of action.

Dowagiac had another six shots in the first half without success for 17 total, but held only a 1-0 intermission advantage with Bangor mustering two shots against Fritz.

The Chiefs also dominated corner kicks with five compared to a pair from the Vikings.

“The shots in the start of the game were with our heads down or leaning back, which is hard to finish that way as we had four shots which easily would have been goals and that is our fault,” stated Williams. “The second half we created more opportunities by moving the ball around more.”

Williams broke free on a beautiful pass from classmate Lauren Krueger and with 24:24 showing on the clock, she scored her second goal of the match to give Dowagiac  a two-goal lead.

Krueger scored with 5:30 left in the match as she found the ball in the middle from 10-yards out and dribbled a hard grounder to the right corner of the net for a 3-0 Chieftain advantage.

Again, the determined Vikings were not going home by being blanked as they put the pressure on after the third Dowagiac goal and this time freshman Marissa Carpio lined a shot by Fritz with Dowagiac defenders surrounding her 30 seconds after the Krueger score.

Bangor once again only had two shots in a half as Dowagiac had 13 shots for a total 30 for the match. The hosts had seven corners to two for the visitors.

Sanchez-Saucedo saved 13 shots for the Vikings compared to the two for Fritz.

“This is a group of hard-working girls that I have coached since the fifth grade for the most part, so they know me well and is a fun group. The jitters got them in the first game,” concluded Williams.  “The conference (Wolverine) is very tough at the top, but these girls should compete with anybody that is our size of school.”