St. Mary's stops Notre Dame Prep

No. 3 Saints roll, 3-0, improve record to 9-1 with eighth straight win

Girls soccer

October 02, 2001|By Edward Lee | Edward Lee,SUN STAFF

For the St. Mary's girls soccer team, the final score was a product of the attitude.

Playing with a heightened sense of confidence, the third-ranked Saints scored two goals in the first 16 minutes to overpower host and No. 15 Notre Dame Prep, 3-0, in Towson yesterday.

Junior midfielder Sarah Sample registered a goal and an assist as St. Mary's continued to build on its 2-1 double-overtime victory over No. 4 John Carroll last Friday.

"I think the win against John Carroll really carried over to this game," said senior striker Tiffany Venuto. "We were so pumped to play today."

The Saints, who improved to 9-1 overall and 4-0 in the Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland's A Conference, have bounced back from a 2-0 loss to Class 3A state champ River Hill at the Pioneer Tournament last month by winning eight consecutive games.

The boost in morale was evident as soon as the whistle blew yesterday. Just four minutes into the game, Sample centered the ball to senior midfielder Kelly Hammond, who trapped the ball and kicked it with her left foot into the net.

Eleven minutes later, Sample launched a perfect shot from about 35 yards out to extend the Saints' advantage to two.

"Those two quick goals helped us set the pace for the game," said Hammond, who leads the team in goals with nine and is tied for the team lead in points with 12. "It gave us more space to pass the ball around and keep possession."

Trailing by two, the Blazers mounted some pressure against St. Mary's by drawing two corner kicks and attacking the net. Saints senior goalkeeper Katy Owings recorded four saves in the first half.

But St. Mary's countered with 17:20 left in the half when junior striker Bibi Anderson converted a feed from junior striker Alison Pancotti to make it 3-0.

Even with a three-goal lead at halftime, Saints coach Jerry Tobin said he wasn't about to overlook Notre Dame Prep (5-5, 3-3).

"I didn't feel that comfortable," he said. "I never got that feeling that we had put them away."

In the second half, the Blazers took eight shots and earned four corner kicks. Their best chance to get on the scoreboard was denied when Owings (seven saves) leaped and snared a header by senior striker Amy Alecci midway through the half.

Although his squad played with more determination in the second half and senior goalie Lauren Stone finished with 10 saves, Notre Dame Prep coach Mark Deaton said the Blazers need to put together two well-played halves.

"We let them get up three goals quick and you can't do that in this league," said Deaton, whose team has lost to four top 15 teams in McDonogh, St. Mary's, John Carroll, and Westminster. "I thought we had our opportunities. ... If we make a run, we'll see them in the [conference] tournament."

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