Woodruff proved to be more than the Camden girls’ soccer team could handle as the Lady Wolverines handed visiting Camden a 6-1 loss in Wednesday’s second round of the AAA Upper State tournament.
The loss ended the Lady Bulldogs’ state tourney run and season. It came two nights after a physical opening round match for Camden.
In what looked to be a nightmare scenario in which Camden’s leading scorer Chloe Grein was injured midway through the first half, the Lady Bulldogs pulled together and defeated visiting Seneca, 2-0, in Monday’s first round play in the AAA Upper State tournament.
“Our girls came out slow, however, as the game progressed, we got in our rhythm,” Chickering said. “I had told them before the game we had to play our way, which was possession and moving the ball wide. We had gotten away from that as the season progressed due to some of the competition we were playing. It is great for players to score and get recognition, however, it also began to hurt how we play on the field.”
Making the necessary corrections, CHS received a goal each from Grein --- the 102nd of her career and 36th of the season and another from Rose Carrera to do all its scoring in the first half.
Grein broke through the SHS defense and placed her shot into the back of the net for the 1-0 lead.
“We needed the first goal for the girls to settle and not feel the pressure,” Chickering said. “Seneca was a quality team that could have won the game, too, if they scored first. We were pretty even throughout the game, however, we made our chances count.
“Seneca had its opportunities in the first half as they held their striker high on our defense and she was able to break through a few times.”
As the clocked ticked down toward the end of the first 40 minutes, Chickering said her girls started getting comfortable in their surroundings. “We began to move the ball better around the field, looking for the open player rather than just kicking the ball to get it off our foot,” she said.
Toward the end of the first half, a ball was played wide to Camden’s Hailey Webb who dribbled down the sideline before sending Dayton Jeffcoat a through ball which continued down the side. Jeffcoat was able to beat a defender in the box, where she attempted to shoot it near post. The SHS keeper got a handle of the ball but it slid under her and popped out the other side where Carrera made the run to finish it in the net.
“This was a great developing play as this is what I have been stressing to them since the second half of the season,” Chickering said of the insurance tally. “This is the type of play that we got away from, and was hurting us when we played better teams. The team got back on track, and earned the win.
“Rosa played well in this game as she stepped up after Chloe got hurt. She went after the ball, and because of that got the security goal we needed to clinch the win. It was a great feeling.”
Grein suffered her injury while she had the ball in the box, and a couple of defenders were surrounding her and it appeared she was tripped in the box. No foul was called on the play and Grein would not return until the second half.
“During that time, the girls stepped up and did what they had to do to win the game,” Chickering said. “As the game went on, Seneca started to putter out and we kept moving the ball wide and creating chances for ourselves.
“Our defense played well for most part of the game, there were times that Seneca was able to slip by us, but the girls were able to cover each other and stop the opportunities. Mary Caston Morgan got the shutout in goal and made a few good saves to keep the clean sheet. In addition, Mary Boucher and Kristen Randolph came off the bench and did a great job playing outside midfield.
“This was the type of game we needed in preparation for the next round, even the girls recognized that. It was a great win, against a quality opponent. I am so proud of the girls and how they grinded it out and supported each other during the 80 minutes. It was hot (Monday) and they pushed through it to earn the victory.”
Bulldogs knocked from state tourney: Visiting Crescent defeated the Camden boys’ soccer team, 5-2, in Wednesday’s opening round of the AAA Upper State tournament at Zemp Stadium.
The host Bulldogs entered the contest as the runners-up in Region 4-AAA.