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Girls Developmental (JV) Soccer Team First Home Victory

Coach Rodney Jones
GIrls JV Side Rules the Pitch in a 4-3 Home Victory
The ladies of the Fighting Saints JV side claimed redemption in their first home fixture with a 4-3 win over Sidwell Friends.  Our side struck first on a clever pass and assist from Morgan Neilson that set up a brilliant finish by Elliot Desautels.  However, Sidwell leveled the tally with an equalizer in the 17th minute.  The match remained level for the remainder of the first half with the Saints side dominating the time of possession and creating several unrealized scoring opportunities.  

In the second half, Sidwell came out swinging, scoring a quick counter-attack goal to put them up 1-2 in the early minutes of the second frame.  But the Saints side did not crumble, and in the 43 minute Mariel Irish served up a perfect throw-in to Lydia Penkiunas, who drove the ball into the penalty area and served up a sizzling far-post strike that left a channel of turf in its wake.   With the game equalized, the Saints stayed on the front foot, and in the  47th minute Sarah Spalding split two Sidwell defenders, in the penalty area, with a perfect pass to Madeleine Moore who placed a clever strike passed the sprawling Sidwell keeper to put the side up 3-2.  The Saints scoring spree wasn't done.  Five minutes later Madeliene returned the favor, setting Sarah up for an amazing finish just out of reach of the Sidwell keeper.   But the match was not over.  In the waning moments of the half, Sidwell again scored on a blistering counter-attack goal with just over a minute left in regulation play. 

As we have done each week, I want to recognize standout players and performances.  First, "Big-ups" to Sarah Spalding and Mackenzie Allen, two exceptional Middle School Lady Ballers, that just the squad for the first time on Tuesday.  These amazing young ladies showed their metal today - Sarah with an assist and a goal and Mackenzie (aka Mac) holding it down in the second half in the box.  Second, I want to give a shout-out to Catie Poersch, who again had a great match between the posts.  The game balls for the match go to the winger tandem of Lydia Penkiunas and Maddie Moore whose work rate was off the charts.  But the player of the match, hands-down, was Ellery Johnson.  Ellery was in beast mode, her play and defense at the 4 was nothing less that ferocious. 

Finally, I want to give all the ladies my deepest gratitude for their conduct this week at practice and before today's match.  This gratitude isn't for their play on the field, it is for the maturity, class and grace they have shown off the pitch.  On Tuesday a teammate suffered a concussion during practice and for the last half-hour of practice I was with her and the trainer.  The team organized themselves and completed the training session as planned with almost no prompting from me.  When practice was over, they all came to comfort and check on their teammate.  I want to give a special thanks to Helayna Clark and Ashley Centeno for being extensions of me in rendering aid and getting help for their injured teammate.  Then today, the Sidwell coach approached me and said they only had 10-players.  I gave the team the option to play at full-strength  or to play down.  Without hesitation they chose to play down and even devised the formation and game plan.  Part of my job is to try to make them better people, not just players, and this week has been an awesome "people" week for the ladies.  I am more proud of that than the win today. 

Again, thank you to all the parents and students who came out to support the team.  
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Age 3-Grade 12 coed Episcopal day school in Alexandria, Virginia


List of 3 items.

  • Lower School

    Age 3-Grade 5
    400 Fontaine Street
    Alexandria, Virginia 22302
  • Middle School

    Grades: 6-8
    4401 West Braddock Road
    Alexandria, Virginia 22304
  • Upper School

    Grades: 9-12
    1000 St. Stephen's Road
    Alexandria, Virginia 22304