The Morning Journal (Lorain, OH)
Avon Lake nabs 3-0 win at Mentor
MENTOR >> Avon Lake’s possession style might as well carry with it chisels to be tucked behind its players’ shin guards.
Because the Shoregals’ short combination play has such great intent, it chips away at an opposing side and is a nightmare to defend.
Just ask Mentor after an Aug. 30 nonconference match.
Rachel Sheehan netted a firsthalf brace, including a penalty kick before halftime, and Avon Lake emerged from a lengthy road trip to Lake County with a
It was a fair result in favor of the Shoregals (4-0), whose dominance in possession disparity in the opening 40 really set the tone for the evening.
“It was good,” Avon Lake coach Brian Salco said. “We wanted to toe the ball on the ground and keep moving the ball around. We work on our pacing, just always trying to get better every time we come out here.
“We have a big game against Avon on (Sept. 1).
“That’s kind of our preparatory mindset there, and we’ve just got to use this game as kind of your legwork to get there, make sure you’re doing all of the right things — keep possession, keep the ball on the floor. That’s what we’re best at, and we did a really good job tonight, so I’m really, really pleased.”
Sheehan opened her side’s account in the 25th minute, slotting a finish on the edge of the six after a cross from the right flank
by Lexie Gorczyca.
The Cardinals (0-1-2) put in a shift in the defensive third to nearly get the match to halftime down, 1-0, including a quality save from goalkeeper Jill Medvecky to turn away Emma West in the 27th.
But Sheehan had other plans, doing well to draw contact on the left side of the box in the 38th. The junior midfielder took care of her PK side net to the right for a 2-0 advantage.
Avon Lake generated six shots on target in the opening 40.
Mentor was improved in the second half in the attack
and nearly grabbed a lifeline in the 50th minute.
Center back Abby Piks dribbled to the edge of the box and put a curling right-footed effort on target. It dinked off the right post, and Cardinals standout senior Alyssa Blackburn had a look at a hard lefty strike. But Shoregals keeper Andrea Parker (six saves) made the stop to preserve the clean sheet.
Sarah Van Euwen contributed the final margin with a 63rd minute effort on a touch off a corner.
Generally speaking, Monday matches aren’t the easiest task in the world — and given the fact the archrival Eagles are coming to town this week, Salco is thrilled to see his side on such strong form.
“It is tough — you’re coming off a Sunday,” Salco said. “Sometimes, we have a little training session. This week, we did not, because we had a game Saturday, then we had this one, then Wednesday, so we have three games in five days. It is always hard for a Monday, opening of the week, opening for school and stuff. Obviously, the travel to get here as well. This was a tough one for us, but I thought we acclimated well and had a good performance.”