St. Mary’s Ryken girls soc­cer team stays hot

Bullis scores twice as Knights win their 15th game of sea­son

Maryland Independent - - Sports - By TED BLACK tblack@somd­ Twit­ter: tblack­somds1

Tues­day evening the St. Mary’s Ryken High School girls soc­cer team con­tin­ued its win­ning ways this fall by get­ting a pair of goals from one of its lead­ing scor­ers and an un­ex­pected one from a de­fender en route to a 3-1 vic­tory over vis­it­ing Bishop Ire­ton (Va.) in a Washington Catholic Ath­letic Con­fer­ence con­test.

SMR (15-4, 3-3 WCAC) got two goals in the first half from se­nior for­ward Ha­ley Bullis, who is no stranger to scor­ing for the Knights and a sec­ond-half goal from se­nior True San­doval, who cel­e­brated her first goal ever for the Knights. St. Mary’s Ryken was just two days re­moved from win­ning the Mary­land In­de­pen­dent state tour­na­ment, tak­ing five con­tests last week­end in Hager­stown, and now is ap­proach­ing un­char­tered wa­ters in the tough WCAC.

“The girls have re­ally been play­ing well,” Knights head coach Tim Ma­jor said. “We only al­lowed one goal in five games last week­end in that tour­na­ment in Hager­stown and tonight we played re­ally good de­fense lim­it­ing Ire­ton to just one goal. That’s the first time we’ve ever beaten them in my seven years here.”

Bullis gave SMR an early 1-0 lead when the con­verted a break­away op­por­tu­nity into a goal by beat­ing Ire­ton goal­keeper Kather­ine Fuller. But less than five min­utes later the vis­i­tors drew even on a goal by Nora O’Con­nor that eluded Knights goal­keeper Lau­ren Davey, who would make amends over the next 70 min­utes of play, how­ever.

SMR had sev­eral good scor­ing chances on cor­ner kicks and deep passes over the next 20 min­utes, but it did not re­claim the lead un­til Bullis notched her sec­ond goal of the out­ing with just over five min­utes re­main­ing in the first half. The pro­lific se­nior nearly had two more goals in the sec­ond half, but both chances were waved off when she was deemed off­sides.

“That first goal was a break­away and I just had time to take a good shot,” said Bullis, who plans to ma­jor in sci­ence when she heads to col­lege next fall. “Then on the sec­ond shot, I was able to turn and get my hip be­hind the de­fender and then take a low shot with my left foot. Good thing my left was work­ing tonight. I have to avoid be­ing off­sides on those break­away chances.”

Less than a minute af­ter Bullis was de­nied a hat trick when she was deemed off­sides by the near­est of­fi­cial, San­doval gave the Knights a 3-1 lead when she took a cross from Kyleigh Cox and sent a high shot that Fuller de­flected with her right hand but was un­able to send it over the cross­bar. The ball hit the un­der­neath part of the cross­bar and then car­omed off the in­side part of the left post and into the net.

“It was just a lucky shot,” San­doval said of her ini­tial goal. “When I kicked it, I thought it was go­ing over. She nearly saved it, but it just bounced around and fi­nally went in. This year has re­ally been great for all of us, es­pe­cially the se­niors. We usu­ally win one of two games in the con­fer­ence, but this year we’ve al­ready won three.”

Five min­utes later an­other Bullis scor­ing chance was waved off when she was deemed off­sides again and in the sub­se­quent min­utes, the Knights had good scor­ing chances from Cox, El­iz­a­beth Staufen­berger and Gabrielle Leach. Two of them ended in Fuller’s hands, while the third sailed wide of the post.

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