Eddies blank Cass in showdown
Published 11:11 pm Monday, May 2, 2011
EDWARDSBURG — The Edwardsburg Eddies hosted the rival Rangers of Cassopolis in a girls varsity soccer contest on Monday afternoon with first place in the Lakeland Conference on the line.
Both teams came into the match undefeated in conference play with 4-0 records and sharing the top spot in the league. After 80 minutes of soccer it was the Eddies who came away with the 3-0 victory, and the top spot in the conference.
Cassopolis managed to push the ball deep into the Edwardsburg zone early on but great play by the Eddie defense, and goal keeper Sophie Devenney denied the Rangers from finding the back of the net.
The other end of the field was much of the same story as some great saves from Molly Moroz of the Rangers kept the score knotted at 0-0 for nearly 30 minutes.
With just over 11 minutes remaining in the first half of the game, Edwardsburg’s Aly Mooth got a breakaway and finally managed to get one past Moroz and into the back of the net giving the home team the 1-0 lead.
Moments later the Rangers got one of their best opportunities of the night as Meagan Ruff was heading into the Edwardsburg zone, and as she was challenged by Devenney she managed to get the ball by the goal keeper, but before the ball could roll across the goal line Edwardsburgs’ Kristine Handy stepped in and kicked the ball away to keep the lead at 1-0 heading to the break.
“Our defense did a great job of making adjustments and knowing that the ball was going to go to 10 (Bjargey Olafsson) and seven (Ruff), and they knew that if we pressured them it would keep them out of their attack,” said Edwardsburg coach Brett Harring.
The Eddies controlled the second half with their midfield play, and their relentless pressure on the Cassopolis zone.
“They dominated the midfield play,” said Cassopolis coach Oli Olafsson. “We could not get our midfield to gel today and we couldn’t get them to hustle for the ball, and it made all the difference in the world.”
Just before the midway point of the second half Macy Stevenson found Mooth streaking through the zone and once again the senior forward beat Moroz to increase the lead to 2-0.
Brittany Minix would find Paige Szlanfucht with 6:33 remaining to put Edwardsburg on the scoreboard for the final time bringing the final score to 3-0.
Edwardsburg, who lost their first game of the season to Sturgis, has now won six straight to improve to 6-1, 5-0 in conference play. They will play next at Buchanan on Thursday night.
The Rangers drop to 5-3-1 overall, and 4-1 in conference play, and they will travel to Coloma on Thursday.
Edwardsburg 1, Cassopolis 0
E – Aly Mooth 28:52
E- Mooth 19:36 (Macy Stevenson assist)
E – Paige Szlanfucht 33:27 (Brittany Minix assist)
Shots on goal
Edwardsburg 17 Cassopolis 3
Sophie Devenney (Edwardsburg) 2
Molly Moroz (Cass) 9
NILES — A two-goal scoring spurt in the opening minutes of the second half turned a pretty competitive Big 16 Conference West Division soccer match into a lopsided affair Monday night.
Host Niles was playing well against St. Joseph despite being down 3-0 at halftime.
But in the first seven minutes of the second half, back-to-back goals by the Bears extended the lead to 5-0 and led to a 6-0 St. Joseph victory over the Vikings.
The win clinched second place in the division for the Bears.
Melany Hughes had a pair of first half goals for St. Joseph, while Ellery Karsten had the first of her two scores in the opening 40 minutes of play.
Hughes scored in the seventh minute to get the Bears out in front early. Karsten made it 2-0 in the 16th minute off an assist from Sydney Lubeck and then Hughes capped the first half scoring with an unassisted goal in the 36th minute.
Karsten and Jodie Kirschner, who assisted on Karsten’s second goal, beat Niles keeper Sarah Smith in the 46th and 47th minutes to break the match wide open. Rachel Block assisted on the Kirschner score.
“We had some breakdowns on our defense,” Niles coach Jo Schau said. “Our keeper shouldn’t have to make three stops almost back-to-back on one-on-ones. We broke down defensively and they took advantage of it. It kind of deflated our balloon.”
Reed Smith capped the scoring in the 70th minute with an assist from Chelsea VanderZwaag.
The Bears held a 13-1 advantage in shots on goal. Smith recorded seven saves for the Vikings.
St. Joseph 3, Niles 0
SJ – Melany Hughes 7th minute
SJ – Ellery Karsten 16th minute (Sydney Lubeck assist)
SJ – Hughes 36th minute
SJ – Karsten 46th minute (Jodie Kirschner assist)
SJ – Kirschner 47th minute (Rachel Block assist)
SJ – Reed Smith 70th minute (Chelsea VanderZwaag assist)
Shots on goal
St. Joseph 13
St. Joseph 0 (Kayla Rosenthal)
Niles 7 (Sarah Smith)