When some teams score an early goal, they relax, lose their edge and sometimes lose the match.
Not Omaha Skutt.
The Class B No. 1-ranked SkyHawks scored 2:39 into their girls soccer match against No. 2 Elkhorn South and never let up en route to a 2-0 win before an estimated crowd of 500 at Skutt.
Between further attacks on the Storm goal and defense of their own goal, the SkyHawks improved their record to 5-0 with that balanced approach.
“That’s something we always stress is to get that first goal,” Skutt coach John Carlson said. “It relaxes you a little bit and allows you to play your game.”
Marquette recruit Elizabeth Bartels scored Skutt’s first goal off a pass from Anna Conway. The SkyHawks then added that important second goal early in the second half by taking advantage of a well-placed bounce.
A shot by Natalie Johnson bounced off the Storm crossbar and went straight up, nearly to the top of the football goalpost behind the net.
Waiting patiently for the ball to return to the field turf was sophomore forward Caitlin Rerucha, who was positioned perfectly to chip it into the net for the 2-0 Skutt lead at 51:25.
The SkyHawks then were able to put the rest of the match on the shoulders of their back three defenders — Conway, Erin Slattery and Laura Pivovar. Carlson said this was Conway’s first game of the season because she’s been battling a hip-flexor injury.
“That speed back there is so critical, especially in the system we play,” Carlson said. “Our back three, that’s a talented crew.”
It also was a physical match, something Carlson said he anticipated would be the case.
“They’re a legitimate team and top-five in my mind regardless of class,” Carlson said of the Storm. “I’ve been doing this for 20 years, and that was one of the most physical games I’ve seen. It was fun to watch, and that’s all you can ask for.”
Elkhorn South (1-1) ........................... 0 0—0
At Omaha Skutt (5-0) ........................... 1 1—2
Goals: 1, OS, Elizabeth Bartels (Anna Conway), 2:39. 2, OS, Caitlin Rerucha (Natalie Johnson), 51:25.
Contact the writer:
402-618-4113, firstname.lastname@example.org, twitter.com/stevebeideck