Lady Bisons hold off Dutch
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
By Rich Murawski Assistant Sports Editor
HYDE - The Clearfield girls soccer team got off to a quick start Monday at the Bison Sports Complex, then held off St. Marys to come away with a 3-2 victory.
B.J. Bowman, Julia Ammerman and Brooke Mohney each scored for Clearfield as the Lady Bisons built a 3-0 lead just 28 minutes into the game. But Kayla Hoohuli notched a goal with only 14 seconds left in the first half, then added a second goal 15 minutes into the second to make what looked like a runaway into a nailbiter.
"For the first 15 or 20 minutes we dominated the game," Clearfield head coach Jen Wright said. "We had our shots. We got opportunities. We hit the post a few times. And we had a few go in. Bowman, Mohney and Ammerman were all at the right place at the right time.
"But we came out flat in the second half. It seemed like we lost our shape on the field. St. Marys was running through the ball and we were hesitating, not playing with as much confidence as we did in the first half."
Bowman's goal came just 7:39 into the contest and was set up from a Mohney corner kick. Mohney got the ball to the far corner where Bowman got a solid foot on it, but clanged it off the crossbar. The ball went straight down and landed at the near post where Abby Fishbone stood. Fishbone touched the ball back to Bowman, who buried her second chance into the Lady Dutch net. Bowman led Clearfield with seven shots.
"Everyone was there at the right time," Wright said. "Bowman go the shot off and it hit the crossbar, and Abby was there to get a foot on it and right to Bowman's foot and she got it to the back of the net."
Bowman and Mohney each had shots hit the post during the next few minutes of play before Ammerman connected on a shot at the 14-minute mark. Ammerman took a cross pass from Bowman and beat a Dutch defender before slipping the shot past St. Marys keeper Becky Aul to give the Lady Bisons a 2-0 lead.
Ammerman was tough for the Lady Dutch to handle all game long, as she used her speed and skill to make several good runs down the left wing. She finished the game with four shots.
"She's very quick," Wright said of Ammerman. "She has a lot of speed, and she plays with confidence. She's not afraid to use moves to get around players. She did a very nice job. She and Brooke worked very well together with the give-and-goes and getting the crosses off."
Wright also thought Candice Morgan played well and was a key ingredient in the early offensive fireworks.
"With Julia now on the outside and Candace pushed to the back position, that gave us some more offensive threats," Wright said.
Mohney gave Clearfield what turned out to be a very important three-goal cushion with a dazzling individual effort that culminated with a goal at 27:33.
Mohney beat a St. Marys player to a 50-50 ball just outside the goal box down the left wing. She dribbled between two defenders and around a third, before placing a perfect shot in the Dutch goal.
"She dribbled with confidence, and that is what we keep encouraging her to do," Wright said. "She took on a couple players and got her shot off. It was a nice one-on-one effort, and she finished it."
But despite a one-sided first half that saw Clearfield lead in shots, 15-4, St. Marys found a way to get on the board with seconds left before the break.
Brittany Orr was awarded a direct kick about 25 yards outside the Clearfield goal and sent the ball on net. It bounced off one of the Lady Bison players who had formed a wall and ended up at Hoohuli's feet. The Lady Dutch striker got the ball past Clearfield keeper Brandie Centi and inside the far post with 14 seconds remaining in the half.
St. Marys built on the late first-half score by coming out in the second and grabbing all the momentum. The Lady Dutch kept possession in Clearfield's end and had several scoring opportunities before finally capitalizing at 55:28.
Orr set up for another direct kick just outside the 18 and sent it over the wall and toward the Lady Bison net. Hoohuli and Centi arrived at the ball at about the same time, but the Lady Dutch forward was able to direct it into the net to get her team within a goal at 3-2.
Wright says a change in formation as well as intensity got the Lady Bisons on their heels early in the second half.
"They played three up top. They were in a 4-4-3 and it seemed like we were losing our marks," she said. "Our outside mids didn't know whether they should push in with their mark or not. And St. Marys was going. They were getting all the loose balls. But we just came out flat. I think the girls kind of thought we had the game, and St. Marys came on strong."
Clearfield was able to regroup after the St. Marys goal and kept the Lady Dutch off the board for the remainder of the game. Sweeper Lisa Bumbarger was key to the Clearfield defense, making several big plays throughout the contest that thwarted St. Marys offensive advances.
"We adjusted our lineup from the first couple games," Wright said.
"Lisa stepped into that sweeper role and did an awesome job. She has a strong foot, and she can read the play very well. We moved Abby inside, and she is doing well helping us keep our shape."
Centi and Aul each made eight saves.
Clearfield improved to 3-4. The Lady Bisons are back in action today, playing host to Altoona.
Clearfield 3. St. Marys 2
1. B.J. Bowman, C, (Abby Fishbone), 7:39.
2. Julia Ammerman, C, (Bowman), 14:00.
3. Brooke Mohney, (unassisted), 27:33.
4. Kayla Hoohuli, SM, (Brittany Orr), 39:46.
5. Hoohuli, (Orr), 55:28.
Shots: St. Marys 11, Clearfield 23.
Saves: St. Marys (Becky Aul) 8, Clearfield (Brandie Centi) 8.
Corner kicks: St. Marys 4. Clearfield 2.