Joppatowne's Thori Staples didn't even need the entire second half of Thursday's soccer game against Aberdeen to score four times.
"I don't think I ever scored four goals in one half," the senior forwardsaid. "I think I did score four in a game once."
Staples' feat fueled Joppatowne's rout of visiting Aberdeen, 7-1,and was typical of how the powerful, more experienced Mariners controlled the game against Aberdeen.
They attempted 43 shots on goal to Aberdeen's four, and more importantly, forced the Eagles to play much of the game in their
own half of the field.
"They're expert at one-touching it," Aberdeen coach Stu Hinch said. "They one-touch it, they know where it'll be. That's what we're trying to work toward."
The Mariners came out looking nothing like the team that had lost, 6-0, to Wilde Lake of Howard County earlier in the week. In short,the Mariners came out smoking.
Barely six minutes into the contest they took a 1-0 lead on a goal by Jennifer Francis. Buoyed by the lead, Joppatowne pressed its advantage, firing 24 shots on goal in thefirst half.
Joppatowne forward Crissy Maly hit a corner kick thatAberdeen goalie Lanell Ward appeared to have stopped. But the wet
ball slipped through her hands, and Mariner halfback Cheryl Ulrich tapped it in for a 2-0 halftime lead.
"I knew going in it would be tough," Hinch said. "I told them going in, 'Don't worry if you lose 2-0 or 10-0, a loss is a loss.' "
Unfortunately for the Eagles, thedeficit would get closer to 10-0.
The Mariners attempted four shots on goal before the Eagles could even get the ball past midfield. Joppatowne broke through again later when Maly, who had been at the Aberdeen goal all afternoon, put a penalty kick past Ward for a 3-0 lead.
"She just had one of those games where nothing was going in," Joppatowne Coach Dwayne Noe said of his star forward. "But she's stillone of the best players around."
But the best player on this day was clearly Staples. After Aberdeen finally broke on the board on a nifty breakaway goal by Melanie Mezan, she simply took over.
In 22 minutes, Staples scored on a rocket from just inside the penalty box;a header off a pass from Maly; a shot from the right of the box witha defender right in front of her; and a breakaway in which she somehow avoided contact with goalie Ward and slipped the ball past her.
"The problem I enjoy is that we don't have a bad team," Noe said. "But this was a good confidence builder for us."