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McIntosh's two goal lift Mount Abe girls' soccer over Tigers again

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Posted on October 13, 2016 |
By Andy Kirkaldy



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TIGER DARCY STAATS, left, and Eagle Abby Mansfield run down a loose ball during Tuesday’s game in Bristol. Independent photo/Trent Campbell

BRISTOL — The Mount Abraham Union High School girls’ soccer team on Tuesday picked up its second 2-1 victory of the fall over Middlebury, this time on the Eagles’ home turf.

Nesta McIntosh scored twice in the second half to spark the Eagles. McIntosh’s second goal came late and snapped a 1-1 tie four minutes after Helen Anderson had equalized for the Tigers in an evenly played match — each team launched eight shots.

“We couldn’t have won it without her today,” said Eagle coach Dustin Corrigan. “A couple big plays were the difference in the match, for sure.”

McIntosh split time between right back and center middie, and scored six minutes into the second half after starting at midfield. Corrigan then moved her back to defense to help protect the lead, and put McIntosh back at midfield after the Tigers scored.

But he also noted many other Eagles moved around, too, and executed the game plan of containing the talented Tiger midfielders, which gave MUHS the edge in possession for much of the game, especially in the first half.

“I’m really proud of them right now because they’ve really stuck together. We’ve asked a lot of them to play several different roles, and they’ve done that,” he said, adding, “They’ve got a very good midfield. We just wanted to make sure in the midfield we stayed goal-side and kept the play in front of us.”

The Eagles improved to 5-6 and kept alive their hopes for a .500 record and a Division II first-round home playoff game.

The Tigers, who entered the season with high hopes, dropped to 4-6-1 with. Five of their six losses have come by one or two goals, in four of their 11 games they have been shutout, and Tuesday was the third time the Tigers have scored just once.

But a program that once considered four wins a successful season continues to play good soccer and often carries play for long stretches of the game, as they did in Tuesday’s first half.

Coach Wendy Leeds acknowledged she and the Tigers are feeling frustrated by not being rewarded for the quality of their play.

“We’re working really hard and not getting the results. They’re working hard to stay positive,” Leeds said. “We’ve got to keep pushing.”

In that first half the Tiger defense of sweeper Darcy Staats, stopper Kess Moulton and wing backs Satchel McLaughlin, Alexa Lapiner and Ashlynn Foster limited the Eagles to one shot on goalie Riley Fenster, although McIntosh did hit the top of the crossbar with a looping cross from the left side after she moved to midfield.

MUHS midfielders Andi Boe, Anderson, Isabel Rosenberg, Amelia Ingersoll and Aileen Bosworth kept the ball heading the other way most of the time.

Eagle goalie Genysis Berube (four saves total, three in the first half) came out to stop Bosworth on a serve from Anderson early on, and made the save of the game in the 13th minute. Bosworth crossed from the right side to the far post, and Ingersoll drilled a point-blank one-time volley. But Berube ranged across the goalmouth to get a hand on the ball and deflect it wide.

For most of the rest of the half, the Eagle backs — stopper Jenna McArdle, sweeper Emma LaRose, and Lydia Pitts, McIntosh and Renee Bolduc taking turns on the flanks — prevented the Tigers from facing goal to get good looks on Berube, and the Tigers edge in play translated to only a 4-2 edge in shots.

In the second half, the Eagles earned more territory as middies Casey Ober and Mae Peterson in particular began to assert themselves, as well as McIntosh. They outshot the Tigers, 6-4, and MUHS second-half goalie Abby Gleason stopped two shots.

McIntosh struck first at 33:37. She carried toward the right side of the Tiger box and found the left side of the net with a low, 22-yard shot.

Gleason stopped Peterson three minutes later, and also came out to deny Lauren Gibson on a through-ball midway through the half.

The Tigers scored after the Eagle defense blocked a Rosenberg shot near the left post. Anderson won the scramble for the ball, corralling it at the top of the box and finding the upper right corner, just off Berube’s fingertips at 9:59.

Corrigan immediately moved McIntosh back into the attack, and it paid off at 5:45. Striker Abby Mansfield, an effective ball-winner all afternoon, broke up a Tiger clear on the left sideline and sent the ball in toward the top of the box. Peterson collected it and tapped it to McIntosh, who unleashed another long bomb, this one an untouchable bullet high into the right side of the net.

Corrigan noted his team’s recent strong play.

“The trajectory we’ve been going on has been good. We’re getting a little stronger each time, and that’s what we want,” he said.

And Corrigan praised the Tigers.

“That’s a good team right there,” he said. “I don’t think their record reflects how good that Middlebury’s team is.”

Andy Kirkaldy may be reached at [email protected]

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