What a difference a month can make, especially for a first-year varsity soccer program.
Back on Sept. 5, Pymatuning Valley easily beat Cardinal, 9-0. Since then, the Huskies have gained both experience and depth with the return of several injured players and it showed in Thursday’s 1-0 loss to the Lakers.
“Coach (Elisabeth) Robinson and I couldn’t be any more thrilled with the improvement of this squad,” said Cardinal co-coach Brian Gallagher. To go from 9-0 to 1-0 with a goal scored in the 70th minute is crazy. They scored on a wild shot that wasn’t even a shot on goal. The ball was drilled and went off one of their girls’ knees from 20 yards out, a rocket to the upper left.”
Marina Cooper and Mackenzie Conley continued to lead the Huskies on the field.
“Cooper’s heart, she plays like no other,” Gallagher said. “I have the best two center defenders around in Conley and Cooper. They really have come into their own late in the season and it’s nice knowing we have two goalies that can step up any time.”
Kayla Valentine spent her time in the net while Anna Avalon played well enough on the defensive third to keep Gallager from making a planned switch at halftime.
“Kayla played goalie the whole time, but not by design,” Gallagher said. “My plan was to switch goalies at half but Anna played extremely well on the defensive line. She gave nothing up and played their striker on her most of the first half.”
Cardinal travels to Badger on Monday.