Roland Park pulls away from St. Paul's Harper, McInnes lead No. 6 Reds to 15-10 win

April 24, 1996|By John W. Stewart | John W. Stewart,SUN STAFF

Alli Harper and Erin McInnes combined for eight goals, and visiting Roland Park wore down St. Paul's, 15-10, in an AIS A Division non-conference meeting yesterday. The Reds recorded a third successive victory, taking charge during a 12-minute span midway through the game.

Tenth-ranked St. Paul's (4-3) was within 5-4 of Roland Park heading into the final three minutes of the half, but a three-goal run helped stake the No. 6 Reds (7-2) to an 8-5 cushion at the break, and they went on to get four of the first five goals in the second half.

Harper finished with five goals; McInnes, three goals; and Lizzie Bennett, two goals and two assists. For St. Paul's, Mills Hook had four goals; Francoise Gordon, two goals and an assist; and Sarah Oglesby, one goal and two assists.

"We have been working toward getting good continuity, and we're starting to challenge the goal," said Roland Park coach Traci Magness, who watched her squad score the most goals since getting 16 in an opening-game win over Seton Keough.

"I think everybody is keenly aware this is a team sport and it takes a team effort every time. For instance, Alli [Harper] is excellent off the ball, but she is one who has picked up the challenge of attacking the goal."

Perhaps nowhere is the team concept more visible and more important than at St. Paul's. A week ago, one of its players was hospitalized with bacterial meningitis, and several teammates reported sickness.

"We're not the team we were a week and a half ago, but we have worked really hard, constantly adjusting, shuttling players in and out," coach Sandy Hoody said. Two starting midfielders were among the missing, but whereas the teams were about even on draws, Roland Park had a big advantage on ground balls and, as a result, ball control.

Three juniors start on attack for the Gators -- Hook, Libby Hoyle and Oglesby -- and Hoody was especially complimentary of their efforts. "They have picked up the slack, done everything asked of them, and have really pulled the group together."

Roland Park had nearly twice as many shots, but St. Paul's made its count, connecting on five of nine in the first half and five of seven in the second half, with all but the final two goals coming against Reds goalkeeper Melissa Coyne.

"Our team a week ago would have been tough to beat. Now, we are regrouping, and today we saw what we're made of, " Hoody said. "No excuses, but we have been using makeshift combinations. I hope by next week to be back to just about full strength."

Pub Date: 4/24/96

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