Second tie in a week brings record to 0-2-2
SEPT. 22, BLAZER STADIUM-
Frustration was the only word to describe the sentiment on the field, on the bench and in the stands as the girls' soccer team repeatedly brought onlookers to the edges of their seats tonight in a neck-and-neck battle against a very physical Magruder team, only to leave play after play unfinished and miss multiple chances to score.
Despite the unsatisfying result, this second double-overtime tie after Monday's against Richard Montgomery showcased marked improvement and resilience in the Blair girls, who have faced the loss of several dominant seniors this year in addition to those players lost last year to graduation. "We had to change our entire formation, and for changing our entire formation, we're doing amazing," said senior co-captain Vicky Dean.
Senior goalie Julia Simon-Mishel again kept the team in the game, saving shots that could have potentially become game-winning goals. Simon-Mishel stopped 11 balls in the first half alone, while Magruder's goalie stopped only three, evidence also of the Blair girls' reluctance to take risky shots, especially in the first half.
Coach Robert Gibb believed that his team could have won tonight if only they had been able to capitalize on the opportunities they set up for themselves. "I thought we were the better team, we created more chances. We just didn't quite get the shots on goal," he said.
The first half began quietly for the Blazers, who had trouble getting past several strong Magruder defenders and passing across the field to get kicks through. Sophomore Danielle Peck, who scored Blair's only goal against rival Whitman last Tuesday, made the first and strongest attempt on goal for Blair but it was thwarted by a leaping Colonel goalie. The first half continued fairly listlessly until the last five minutes, when the Blazer girls fired themselves up and Simon-Mishel made another play on a nail-bitingly close shot.
As the newly pumped-up Blazers took the field, in the first minute of the second half, the pressure on Blair earlier in the game visually shifted to Magruder as Blazers began charging up the field and orchestrating impressive set-up plays. Junior Cate Rassman and senior Lindsey Fowler-Marques put together several solid lateral passes that came close to scoring but for Magruder's defenders. With five minutes left in the second half and the score still 0-0, Blair got aggressive. However, their efforts turned out to be in vain, and the recurring frustration of the game could be summed up in three consecutive Blair corner kicks that flew inches from the Magruder net yet somehow managed to stay out.
Both overtime periods were much like the second half. Blair played with a strong offense, but just couldn't score the goals they needed. The match-up drew to an unsatisfying close as Magruder set up a final charge which was blocked by Simon-Mishel.
Although they didn't score the decisive win they wanted, the Blair girls were still happy with what this game revealed about their progress, according to Dean. "We're working so much harder," she said, adding, "we're getting so much closer."
Blair's next game is on Tuesday, September 28 at Blake at 7:00 p.m.
Ellie Blalock. Ellie is a SENIOR in the CAP program at Blair. She enjoys such activities as traveling, being able to say "water" in six languages and having heart-to-heart chats with eccentric politicians. If you're in need of a laugh, please ask Ellie about her driving record...you … More »