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Foothill League girls soccer: Hart strikes more

Indians girls net their first 2012 league victory

Posted: January 18, 2012 1:55 a.m.
Updated: January 18, 2012 1:55 a.m.
 

In a match up of two teams looking for their first Foothill League win of the season, the Hart girls soccer team got on the board early and held on for a 3-1 victory over Golden Valley on Tuesday afternoon at Golden Valley High School.

The Indians (7-2-5, 1-1-1), fresh off a loss to Saugus on Friday, struck early.

McKinley Kane dribbled right from 35 yards out and sent the ball high into the net for a 1-0 lead in the second minute.

“It was great to see that,” said Hart head coach Mike Gomez. “It was a great opportunity. It gave them an opportunity to relax.”

But after the Indians added another goal on a Grizzlies’ own goal in the 30th minute, Hart started to become too relaxed.

The Grizzlies’ Samantha Jennings began to get free in the attacking zone down the right sideline.

“We took it for granted (after we took an early lead),” Hart’s Danica Morgan said. “We decided to settle down early in the game”

Shortly before halftime, Jennings slipped past a Hart defender in the box and kicked the ball off the far post for the Grizzlies’ best scoring chance of the first half.

Minutes later she got another opportunity, but the ball hit the top of the crossbar and bounced harmlessly over the touchline.
Needing to increase his team’s offensive production, Golden Valley head coach Charles Martinez adjusted his lineup in the second half — putting Lauren Bermudez up front with Jennings.

The move immediately paid off.

Less than a minute into the second half, Bermudez turned in the midfield and flicked the ball ahead to Jennings who was running into the attacking zone up the middle of the field.

Jennings entered the 18-yard box and kicked the ball high off the hands of Hart goalie Ashleigh Tippet for the Grizzlies’ first goal.

“The message was to be a little more aggressive,” Martinez said. “I moved Lauren up to try to penetrate and we capitalized.”

The goal may have been a boost to the Grizzlies’ confidence, but on the other side it worked as the wake-up call the Indians needed.

“I think it was astonishing,” Gomez said. “It seemed like our defender (Hailey Jenkins) stepped in and moved back. She thought ‘I can take her’ ... I’m glad it happened, she woke up.”

Hart immediately responded, with Jenny Chavez beating two Grizzlies defenders and putting a goal away on a rebound after keeper Colleen Fleming deflected her first shot.

The goal put Hart ahead 3-1 less than two minutes after the Grizzlies (5-8-1, 0-3-0) had gotten on the board.

It was a strike the Grizzlies never recovered from as Hart held on for its first league win of the season.

“It’s good to have that monkey off,” Gomez said.

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