Patriot Girls Roll Past Swett
The conference winning streak continued as expected for the Pinecrest girls’ soccer team on Wednesday night at John Williams Field as they won easily over Purnell Swett, 10-0.
With the win, Pinecrest solidified its Southeastern Conference record at 3-0-0, while Swett fell to 0-2-0 in the conference and 0-4-0 overall.
Under the 10-goal conference rule, the game is stopped by the referees after completing at least one half of play and when a team achieves a 10-goal lead.
Antonia Meyers, who tallied three goals in Monday’s game against Scotland High, continued her offensive outburst with two goals, one in each half. Fellow senior Kristen Phelps was also credited with two scores.
This 42-minute home game provided Patriot coach Ray Blatz with the opportunity for liberal substitutions in the first half, allowing six additional Patriots to score.
In the first two minutes of the game, Phelps opened up the scoring as she found the back of the net with a strike from the right side. Teammates Haley Robinson and Sophia Flores wasted little time in adding their scores, and along with Meyers’ first goal, Pinecrest led 4-0 after only 12 minutes.
A well-placed cross from Kelly Palmer from the right sideline found Hannah Bornhorst in the front of the goal just moments later for a 5-0 lead. Hannah Wannall made the score 6-0 with a goal from slightly inside the box.
A quick three-goal flurry with nine minutes remaining in the half gave the Patriots a 9-0 halftime cushion, thanks to a lofted rainbow shot by Ali Schustrom, another goal by Phelps from long range, and defender Jazz Jones’ strike from the left side.
Meyers only needed two minutes at the beginning of the second half to complete the game, with her final goal of the evening.
The Purnell Swett goalkeeper fielded a variety of difficult shots and did a credible job of preventing the onslaught with a number of fine stops. The Pinecrest girls’ ball control and speed of play proved too much for the visitors, as the Patriot defenders rarely touched the ball.
“We always enjoy playing Purnell Swett because they are one of the most sportsmanlike teams on our schedule,” said Blatz, who has directed his team to a 6-0-2 overall record. “They improve every year and they come out with the attitude of why we play soccer — they always have fun. They always handle themselves well.”
Two of the evening’s scorers, Robinson and Bornhorst, felt that the Patriots came out with a purpose in mind and achieved success, not only with the win, but also by being able to rotate people at different positions.
With the Brittany Willis Memorial Scholarship Soccer Showcase coming up in Wilson on Saturday, Bornhorst, a mid-fielder/forward, had valuable minutes on offense and defense and also scored her second goal in as many games.
“Playing different positions gives me more respect for what other players do during a game,” she said, “and it’s good for us to see where we fit as a team as we prepare to play other good teams. That takes a lot of extra focus.”
“Our purpose was still to come out tough and move the ball quickly and, by doing that, it was easy to score early,” said Robinson. “We will continue to practice what we need to do in order to be successful in more difficult games.”
That “more difficult” game could come as early as Saturday, as the Brittany slate finds the Patriots scheduled against Asheville’s T.C. Roberson, with both programs ranked among the top-12 teams in the state.
Blatz hopes to have his entire team healthy and available for the game in what is considered the best high school tournament in the state.
“We’re really looking forward to playing Roberson,“ he said, “since we’ve had a couple of games to really work on some things and see how it applies and how we keep up.
“Our goal is to increase our speed of play and possession of the ball. That will be the key in playing these top teams.”
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