In a 2-0 win over North Ridgeville on Wednesday, the Lady Comets presented a nearly flawless defense in the first half.
The second half saw a number of shots by the Rangers but Amherst’s back and middle frustrated all Rangers efforts.
Holding the middle steady for Amherst was Ally Perkins. Offense and defense played off her position and she handled the burden with skill and intelligence.
Perkins’ play is getting the team through a number of injuries among its seniors: “She’s just coming back. We’ve had three of our seniors who were injured. We’ve only gotten one back. So, she was unlimited minutes tonight,” coach Gary Gonzalez. “With her in the middle, we’re very solid.”
Both Comets goals were by senior Taylor Moore.
She displayed an uncanny ability to be in the right place to take advantage of advances by the offense. Her first goal came at 27 minutes into the half off a cross by Bailee Pihlblad.
The second goal, about 10 minutes into the second period, was the product of a cross from the left by Perkins and a header by Moore near the right bar of the goal.
While the Comets defense held the Rangers to a single shot in the first period, North Ridgeville came back strong in the second with five shots on goal and total of eight shots for the period.
“At times we had three or four sophomores out there and some freshmen,” Gonzalez said. “We do have a much younger line-up because of injuries but I told the girls that’s how you learn. You have to step up. You play with the ones available, that are healthy.”
Goalkeeper RaeAnn Barnes had an easy first half with a single save.
The increased pressure from the Rangers called on Barnes to make five saves in the second half to keep the defense perfect in the 2-0 shutout.
“She does a nice job, but we’ve got to get a little smarter in the back when we have the ball. Sometimes we were playing back when there was pressure. We’ve got to have a little better awareness.”
Rangers goalkeeper Bri Casement had five saves for the evening from a total of nine shots by the Comets.
Carl Sullenberger can be reached at email@example.com.
Photos by Carl Sullenberger | Amherst News-Times Outrunning Ranger Danielle Blagojevic is senior Bailee Pihlblad on Wednesday in North Ridgeville. Pihlblad had an assist in the first half in the first of senior Taylor Moore’s two goals in the 2-0 non-conference win.
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