Fresh­men score two goals as Bull­dogs oust Eas­ton

Times-Record - - SPORTS - By DUSTIN HOLT dholt@ches­pub.com

RIDGELY — The mo­men­tum swings poured much like Fri­day’s rain when North Caro­line High’s girls’ soc­cer team hosted Eas­ton in a Class 2A East Sec­tion II quar­ter­fi­nal.

In a matchup be­tween two schools rich in his­tory, it was fresh­men from North Caro­line that gave the Bull­dogs the edge on the way to a 3-2 vic­tory. Fresh­man Hai­ley Ch­ester scored the game-win­ner, and fel­low rookie Syd­ney Baker added a score. North Caro­line homecoming queen Kylie Phillips also added a goal.

Fourth-seeded North Caro­line (9-4) will play at top seed Kent Is­land (10-3) on Tues­day in the re­gional semi­fi­nals.

“It was a great team ef­fort,” Bull­dog head coach Joe Bild­stein said. “I’ve got a bunch of awe­some girls. We had two fresh­men score. That shows our team be­ing a team.

“The weather didn’t re­ally seem to af­fect the game un­til the very end,” Bild­stein added. “But the girls on each team played phe­nom­e­nal in some tough con­di­tions. Just a phe­nom­e­nal soc­cer game.”

Ear­lier in the season, the War­riors fell to North Caro­line 5-1, but the reg­u­lar-season de­feat was in­con­se­quen­tial as Eas­ton at­tacked from the out­set.

Lily Os­borne, Cat Chris­tian and Mi­randa Wal­ton each cre­ated scor­ing chances in the open­ing min­utes for the War­riors (7-6). In the fifth minute, Os­borne fired a shot but North Caro­line goalie Alyssa Deck made the save. When North Caro­line pushed for­ward, Eas­ton’s mid­field­ers re­gained pos­ses­sion, and pushed the ball back into the of­fen­sive end.

Eas­ton goal­keeper Kate South­worth was called up from the ju­nior var­sity just a day ear­lier, and got the start­ing nod be­cause of an in­jury to start­ing goalie Jess Mil­lard. South­worth made seven saves.

The War­riors broke the score­less tie in the 20th minute when Chris­tian’s shot was saved by Deck, and Os­borne swooped in and knocked in the re­bound for a 1-0 lead.

“I’m re­ally proud of the team,” Eas­ton head coach Elle Pen­ning­ton said. “It was the first thing I told them when they got off the field. I could not have asked any more of them for this last game. They put their hearts on the line.”

The Bull­dogs coun­tered the score with crisp passes be­tween fresh­man Jor­dan Schaet­zly, Ch­ester and se­nior Alexa Law­ton to get NC’s at­tack go­ing.

Eas­ton tried to clear but Sarah Ferkler switched fields from left to right with a cross­ing pass. NC be­gan work­ing the right side when the homecoming queen de­liv­ered.

Phillips got the ball on her foot from 30 yards away and took a big shot that found the back of the net to tie the score at 1-1 in the 24th minute. The mid­fielder is known for her big leg as she scored a sim­i­lar goal in 2017 against the War­riors.

Twice the Bull­dogs broke ties with goals from its rookie class. With five min­utes left be­fore half­time, se­nior Re­becca Gib­bons

sent a lead pass from the right wing into the box. Baker redi­rected the ball with a header for a goal and a 2-1 half­time lead.

Eas­ton pushed the at­tack at the start of the sec­ond half. Chris­tian found space in the 42nd minute to get a break­away, but was taken down in the box to earn a penalty kick, which she con­verted for a 2-2 tie.

“Eas­ton played a great game. Take noth­ing away from them,” Bild­stein said. “They had a great game plan for us. Cat is a phe­nom­e­nal player for them.”

North Caro­line coun­tered. Ferkler dished to Law­ton it the box, but Law­ton’s shot sailed high of the net.

Eas­ton came right back two min­utes later when Julia Ham­mons cre­ated an open­ing for a shot, but Deck made the save to pre­serve the tie. The game re­mained tied un­til the 57th minute.

North Caro­line sopho­more Corinne Webb started a break by dish­ing to Schaet­zly along the right side­line. Schaet­zly de­liv­ered a strong lead pass in the box to Baker, whose shot was saved by South­worth.

Ch­ester cor­ralled the re­bound, and scored for a 3-2 Bull­dog lead.

Eas­ton con­tin­ued to at­tack, but its at­tempts to tie the score were de­nied. Emily Strother cre­ated a clear­ing with six min­utes left. She fired a shot from the left wing but Deck made a div­ing save.

With un­der three min­utes to go, Megan Ko­lakowski sent a lead pass down the right side­line. Wal­ton gath­ered in the pass, drove to­ward net, but her shot sailed wide right.

The at­tempt was the War­riors’ fi­nal scor­ing chance. North Caro­line kept pos­ses­sion around mid­field as the clock ticked off its fi­nal sec­onds.

PHOTO BY DUSTIN HOLT

North Caro­line’s Hai­ley Ch­ester (7) scored the game-win­ning goal in the Bull­dogs’ 3-2 vic­tory over Eas­ton Fri­day, Oct. 26.

PHO­TOS BY DUSTIN HOLT

North Caro­line’s Corinne Webb drives through the mid­dle against Eas­ton.

North Caro­line’s Pearl Sut­ton, right, leads the break against Eas­ton.

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