Cloudy but warm 60'sF and damp from the rain that ended in the morning, we greeted a strong Middlebury team that also -- like us -- had lost by only one goal to UVM.
We talked about being quick and keeping possession -- switching the field and not always going forward into pressure. It worked -- we had most of the possession even with high pressure on us.
In the 6th minute, Courtney and Julia both got off shots that came back into the field. Natalie gathered Julia's rebound and got off a powerful shot that was saved. A little later, Amanda F-C got off another powerful shot that was saved.
In the 11th minute, Shelby anticipated Mila's corner as it wafted over the goalkeeper and skillfully volleyed it inside the far post. Later in the first half Hannah N made some difficult saves before Middlebury's keeper suffered an ankle injury.
At half-time we talked about playing to feet and being calm about possession. That spurred a period of our best playing to date -- we strung together many passes, often wall-passes with give-and-go movement -- and we switched the side of attack much more often than the first half.
Natalie in the 61st minute got into a breakaway run that seemed a certain goal, but her shot was saved. Soon after that, Amanda W made a brilliant cross to Julia who powered the ball into Middlebury's net for the game-winning goal.
Shelby, Ginny and Allison added power shots over the remainder of the half as we had a big majority of the possession. Middlebury kept working hard and got lucky by sending a long ball to a really fast player who beat our defense to slot in a roller past Hannah N, who had smartly come out to reduce the angle.
One of the big improvements in our play during this game was the offensive role of our defenders -- Collin, Blythe, Liz, Tessa, Amanda F-C, Kate, Annie O all became part of the offense to push the whole team up farther toward Middlebury's goal. Amanda F-C in stopper almost made a goal!
Middlebury's coach congratulated us on a another great game, lauding our speed and skill. It was a great game for both teams, and we were happy to have built on our solid playing style over this fourth game of our season.
F: Natalie+Courtney, Ginny+Allison
OM: Jenn+Mila, Amanda W+Katherine
CM: Shelby+Julia, Kristin+Christine
OD: Blythe+Liz, Annie O+Kate
CD: Amanda F-C+Collin, Julia+Tessa
GK: Hannah N
Shots 18:7 Saves 4:9
2 Mila shot saved
4 Shelby shot wide
6 D corner
Courntey shot deflected, Julia shot deflected
Natalie shot saved
9 Amanda F-C shot saved
11 Mila corner to Shelby volley --> 1:0
18 D corner (Jenn)
32 Middlebury shot wide
35 Middlebury shot saved
45 Middlebury corner saved/cleared out
Middlebury shot saved
47 Allison shot saved
49 Middlebury shot saved
50 Mila to Jenn shot wide
54 Jenn shot saved
60 Natalie shot wide
61 Natalie shot saved on breakaway for a corner
Julia header saved
62,64 D corner
67 Amanda W cross to Julia --> 2:0
70 Shelby shot saved
81 Julia corner, Kristin header wide
85 Ginny shot saved
87 Middlebury breakaway --> 2:1
89 Middlebury shot wide
91 Allison shot hit the cross-bar