Eagle girls fall to Harwood in soccer
BRISTOL — The Mount Abraham Union High School girls’ soccer team began this season talking of realistic hopes of winning the Division II championship. The group included 10 seniors, many who helped the Eagles reach semifinals in 2017 and 2018.
But the dream didn’t come true: On Saturday No. 7 seed Harwood (8-5) cashed in on its chances and upset the host No. 2 Eagles, 3-1, in a quarterfinal.
The 13-4 Eagles outshot the Highlanders, 15-7, but Harwood scored twice on just three second-half shots to snap a 1-1 tie.
Coach Dustin Corrigan afterward told a tale as old as soccer about certain results in the sport.
“They took their chances very, very well,” Corrigan said. “And we just couldn’t quite convert on the other end.”
The game got off to a promising start for the Eagles, who nearly converting on an early direct kick taken by center back Savannah Scrodin. Striker Addy Harris flicked it to fellow striker Jess Colbeth, who just missed an open corner. Two Eagle corner kicks followed in the first 12 minutes before the Highlanders gained any traction.
Then the visitors struck on a direct kick at 19:37: Harwood center midfielder Tanum Nelson pounded a 27-yard laser into the upper left corner.
The Eagles countered at 17:10. Harris picked up the ball at midfield, sprinted between two defenders, carried into the box under pressure, and unloaded from eight yards out. Harwood goalie Amaya Rogers blocked the shot, but Eagle striker Lucy Guy followed the play and pounded the ball home in to tie the score.
Play evened out as the Highlanders did well at midfield. Each team had one good chance in the rest of the half. Eagle back Emma Campbell made a saving sliding tackle to stop the best Harwood bid, and Harris missed wide late in the half on a setup from Becca Laurent. The Eagles outshot the Highlanders by 5-4 in the half.
The Eagles had multiple chances in the first 10 minutes of the second half. Rogers stopped Harris after another Laurent feed, Guy missed the frame after a nice over-the-top feed from Mae Peterson, and after Rogers denied Colbeth Laurent fired high on a scramble that followed.
With 16 minutes to go Rogers (six saves) tipped away Scrodin’s direct kick from the left side, and two Eagles could not quite reach the rebound.
Then the Highlanders sank their first shot of the half. Harwood put the ball down the left side and then sent a long bouncing serve to the far side of the box. It bounced right to Anna Jamieson, and she picked the top right corner at 13:01 to put Harwood on top.
The Eagles kept attacking, and Guy, after a feed from Chloe Johnston, saw her left-footed shot roll no more than three inches wide of the right post.
And then the Highlanders’ second shot went in at 9:25. Nelson led a breakout and sent Emma Ravelin in alone on goalie Justice Green with a diagonal through ball. Green (two saves) had no chance on Ravelin’s shot into the right side.
“They were very fast on the counter,” Corrigan said. “They caught us a little flat in the back in transition.”
The Eagles then had a Peterson rebound goal called back for offside, and Green kept their hopes alive by tipping a Nelson shot off the crossbar, but time soon ran out on Mount Abe’s title dream.
Corrigan said it might not have been the Eagles’ best effort, but the breaks didn’t exactly go their way, either.
“We definitely had some urgency, but the emotions might have got the better of us, too, because this team has been laser-focused on winning the championship right from day one,” he said. “And we were a good enough team to do it, but sometimes you need a little luck along the way, too.”
Playing their last soccer game for Mount Abe were Juliette Snell, Laurent, Sydney Minnerly, Johnston, Guy, Peterson, Harris, Campbell, Colbeth and Green.
Corrigan said they were the heart of what he called “a wonderful group.”
“One of the things that makes the group so special is how together they are, how much they stick together and support each other and buy into everything as a team,” he said. “There’s excellent leadership in the senior class that’s going out. There’s a lot of talent, but it’s a really high-character group, too.”
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