Weekly Feature

2017-10-11 / Sports

North girls soccer blanks Sacred Heart, falls to OP in OT

Williamsville North’s girls soccer team was in total control of its 6-0 non-league home win over Sacred Heart Oct. 2.

After two days off, North looked to get off to a quick start against a young Sacred Heart squad.

North coach Doug Kircher said the game started deep in Sacred Heart’s end, as Lady Spartan players passed the ball around and were patient in going forward into the attack.

North generated numerous early scoring chances off crosses and shots but was unable to solve the Sacred Heart defense and goalie Alex Miller, who made key saves to keep the game scoreless.

North’s offense finally broke through midway through the first half.

Lianna VanSice took a pass down the right side, dribbled around a defender and headed up the goal line where she crossed the ball on the ground in front of the goal to a wide-open Candice Kasahara, who shot the ball into the goal for the 1-0 lead.

The game continued to move up and down the field, as the North defense did a nice job of breaking up any scoring chances by the visitors as goalie Brittany Paplham was called upon to make a couple of saves.

Late in the half, North added to its lead when Maya Palmer sent a pass to VanSice on the left side, and she worked her way in and blasted a shot inside the far post to make it 2-0 with two minutes left in the half.

Sam Diamond brought the ball down the left side and sent a pass to Chloe Hurrell, who finished her shot to make it 3-0.

Kircher said the second half continued with North passing and moving the ball very effectively as play moved from side to side with everyone involved in the action.

North added to its scoring when Diamond took a shot that was stopped by Miller, but Ally Maczk ran in and put in the rebound.

That was followed by Kasahara’s second of the night, assisted by Diamond, her third tally of the game.

North closed out the scoring late in the game when Gabby Ciambella assisted and set up Jessica Pilotte near the goal. Paplham recorded the shutout.

North’s other game was a heartbreaking 2-1 double overtime home loss against Orchard Park Oct. 4. North won the previous meeting, 1-0, Sept. 9.

North attacked OP with the wind at its back, but did little with the advantage, as OP took control of the play and kept North pinned in its end for long periods of time, Kircher said.

Kircher said Paplham had to come up with some key saves to keep the game scoreless when OP was awarded a corner kick, which the Lady Spartans were unable to clear and resulted in the first goal for the visitors.

North looked to regroup as numerous players shifted in and out of the lineup in an attempt to spark its play and work its way back into the game.

The half continued with OP having the edge in the time of possession, as the Lady Spartans generated only a couple of shots and pressure on the OP defense and goal as the half ended with North down by one goal.

Kircher said the Lady Spartans regrouped and came out a much different team in the second half, playing more inspired and aggressively against the wind and their opponents.

He said his players created some good scoring chances as they were passing much more effectively.

Melanie Krysiak’s shot just missed going over the crossbar, and Diamond blasted a shot from 25 yards out that was saved by the goalkeeper to keep the Lady Spartans off the board.

With less than 10 minutes left, the Lady Spartans’ hard work finally paid off when Kasahara won the ball near midfield and sent a pass in behind the Orchard Park defense to a streaking Hurrell, who broke in alone on the OP goalkeeper and beat her with a low shot from 25 yards out to tie the game and send the contest into overtime.

The first overtime went by quickly with no real good scoring chances on either side as the ball stayed between the 18-yard boxes, as both teams looked for a break as fatigue began to set in for all the players.

The second overtime began with Orchard Park having the wind with their backs and they began to put a lot of pressure on the Lady Spartan defense, and Paplham, who had to come up with a few key saves to keep the game tied for North.

With time winding down and the Spartans battling to clear the ball up the field, Orchard Park was awarded a throw deep in North’s end of the field, in which they crossed a ball in front of the goal and eventually headed into the North goal for the winning score.

North finished its regular season with a home game Tuesday against Jamestown, but information about the game was unavailable before The Bee went to press. The host Williamsville South at 2 p.m. Saturday.

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