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Foothill League Girls Soccer: Cents break out

Saugus girls score three goals in three-minute span

Posted: February 5, 2010 10:39 p.m.
Updated: February 6, 2010 4:55 a.m.

Saugus forward Jamie Molacek, left, drives to the goal against Canyon defender Ashley Watanabe on Friday at Saugus. Molacek had two goals in the game.

 
Over the past week, Saugus girls soccer experienced relative difficulty putting the ball in the back of net.

Early in Friday’s game, it looked the like the trend would continue.

But the Centurions scored three goals in a three-minute span in the second half, including two from senior forward Jamie Molacek, to beat Canyon 3-1 on Friday at Saugus High School.

With four teams — Saugus, Canyon, Hart and Valencia — entering the day separated by three points from first to fourth place in the Foothill League, the three-goal outburst could not have come at a better time.

“It was like, I can breathe,” said Centurions head coach Natalie Helgeson. “It’s stressful. It’s a stressful race. It’s a tight race.”

Saugus opened the scoring in the 48th minute, when Centurions defender Colleen Ortega sent a ball into the box. Cowboy goalkeeper Kristin Grunhold got a hand on the shot, but the ball deflected to Molacek, whose right foot put her team up 1-0.

Less than two minutes later, it happened again.

This time, it was Saugus’ Brittanie Sakajian that took the shot, with teammate Ysabel Padron knocking home the rebound for the 2-0 lead.

Then in the 51st minute, Centurions senior Shasta Fisher’s through-ball found its way past the Canyon defense to Molacek, who kicked the ball far post and just out of Grunhold’s reach.

Just that quickly, Saugus (14-3-3, 6-2-0) found its finishing touch and was up 3-0.

“I think once we got the first one, we knew that we’d just keep coming,” Molacek said. “We just kept challenging and kept the pressure up. ... I think we’ve been working on (finishing) in practice, working together on getting into the (18-yard box) and working for our shot.”

The Cowboys (15-4-5, 4-3-1) got on the scoreboard in the 78th minute when Devon Goff rifled a shot from the top of the box and over Saugus goalkeeper Kelly Parker.

“I thought for 77 out of 80 minutes, we played right with them,” said Canyon head coach Eric White. “It was back-and-forth, good attacking on both sides.”

However, it was primarily Saugus that dominated possession in the first half and outscored the Cowboys 9-1.

With starting sweeper Kristina Watanabe out with an injury, Canyon junior Malaya Cabrera moved back and helped her team weather the early storm.

Cowboys starting goalkeeper Alex Krall was also held out after she suffered a head injury against Hart on Tuesday.

Grunhold had seven saves in her place, including five in a strong first half.

Parker finished with three.

Now Saugus turns its attention to Tuesday’s match with Hart, which remained tied with the Centurions for first place in league with its victory over West Ranch on Friday.

“I told the girls, ‘The team that’s going to win the Foothill League championship is the team that stays mentally strong,’” Helgeson said.

Meanwhile, Canyon is forced to regroup after back-to-back losses.

“It’s do or die time for us,” White said. “We’ve got Valencia and West Ranch at home (next week) if we want to make the playoffs.”

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