Girls soccer: Braves Trim The Tree
Braves Trim The Tree
Senior night arrived just as the 2019 season seemed to be starting. Time flies when you are having fun and six seniors played their last home Whetstone match. Closing the door on Blue Footie soccer were:
Salma Kebe Senior Goal Keeper
Edee Malley Senior Midfielder
Ellis Scanlon-Kimura Senior Midfielder
Elise Peters Senior Striker
Olivia Mullins Senior Captain Striker
Lily Mathys Senior Captain Striker
It was not surprising that the opening line up was senior laden and ready for action. Salma Kebe would stalk the goal and penalty area. In front the team’s youngsters would fill the back line; Amelia Morris, Annabelle O’Neal, Noemi Cuarente and Lily Hoyt. Seniors Ellis Scanlon-Kimura, Edee Malley and Captain Olivia Mullins filled the middle four with help from junior Nezzie O’Malley. Captain Lily Mathis and senior Elise Peters ably function as the Braves’ strikers.
Tree of Life came on the match sporting a 7-7 record including a victory over Centennial. They had a solid scoring style having put 41 goals in the net. The Braves were ready having spent time working on defensive shifting, covering attackers, headers and scoring from corner kicks. In hindsight it was effort well spent. Early on the Braves won a corner kick that was sent in by Annabelle O’Neal. It was a beauty, the downside was all the Braves missed getting a touch. Not discouraged Annabelle was back shortly with another attempt. Remembering that everyone missed the far post service, Annabelle signaled near. Every one rushed in but Annabelle bent the ball right on in and scored the evenings first tally.
Whetstone 1 -Tree of Life 0
Shortly after the opening commotion died, the Braves earned their third corner kick. Annabelle O’Neal remembering her success with a near post kick, sent her service there again. This time Nezzie O’Malley lurking near post headed in Annabelle’s service. A Tree of Life defender stopped the shot but dropped the ball on Nezzie’s foot. A quick muscle twitch sent the sphere into the net and gave Nezzie the game winner.
Whetstone 2 - Tree of Life 0
A serious attack gave the Trojans an opportunity disputed without avail by the Braves’ coaches. A long ball was sent deep into Brave territory. Selma Kebe had ripped up, down and across the penalty area snuffing out Trojan attack after attack. On this occasion Selma snapped up the ball right on the box’s edge. Looked ok to the Braves bench but the ref pointed to the spot. Salma’s physical presence was intimidating and the Trojan striker sailed the ball into the night sky.
The dust had just settled on that brew-ha-ha when Lily Hoyt sent a through ball up the right side. Lily Mathys always hungry for goals grabbed the ball bent her defender in and went one versus one with Tree of Life keeper Elaina Tong. Lily won the battle and zipped in the Braves final tally.
Whetstone 3 Tree of Life 0
Half time instruction were simple, sort out attackers quicker and pressure the ball. Often long balls were launched that offered Trojan attackers opportunity. The Braves needed more midfield control.
The second half was bunker ball for the Braves. The Trojans sent every thing forward except their horse. Two exciting events brought out a fans frenzy. First Salma raced Trojan Maggie Fladberg for the ball. Salma got there first and swept the ball away and knocked Maggie head over heals. All was good with one ref but the other decided a foul occurred. Again Selma stared down the penalty kick taker and achieved the same results, a ball going high into the sky.
The Braves shut out slipped away in the second half’s 36th minute. Lilly Hoyt and Elizabeth Martin forced the ball wide but were unable to stop a cross. Over shifted the Braves back line was one defender short and Maggie Fladberg punished that oversight.
Whetstone 3 - Tree of Life 1
The last 6 minutes were “Katie bar the door”, but the Braves slammed it shut and no amount of Trojan banging was prying it open.
Stat lovers: 9 shots on goal, 4 corner kicks earned, two fouls given, 17 keeper saves with three goals scored and one yielded. Seasons total goals scored 42 and climbing. Record is 7-4-3.
A super send off for the Seniors, nothing left to do but eat some pie and enjoy the cake.
Up next the Braves will travel West now that the heat is down, Wednesday Oct 9, game time 5:30 pm.
Your Sports Reporter