2009-05-01 / Sports

Lady Eagles overcome stingy Devils

Story and Photo by Michael Orr

Airport's Cassie Shumpert controls the ball against the defense of Dreher's Allyson Hill. Airport's Cassie Shumpert controls the ball against the defense of Dreher's Allyson Hill. It took almost 50 minutes but seventh- ranked Airport's senior leader Casi Jones finally netted a goal for the Lady Eagles. Ten minutes later her corner kick was flicked in by fellow senior Erin Gray in Airport's 2- 0 victory over Dreher at Memorial Stadium on April 24.

Both sides found offense hard to come by in the opening half as the defense reigned. Allyson Hill, Ashley Konkle, and Grace Hunter played well in the defensive midfield, while stalwarts Allie Reid and Josephine Fome anchored the back line for Dreher. Though Airport had more firepower offensively, the Lady Eagles could not crack the tough Blue Devil defense.

Likewise, despite several nice runs by Dreher's Sara Masek and Richlee Gordon, Airport's defense was up to the task. Heather Button and Rebecca Baker in particular were able to thwart the Devils.

As the second half began, Airport seemed to move in offensive waves. Using three or four players and taking advantage of excellent crosses, the Lady Eagles were able to move the ball across the field and find open lanes. In the 50th minute, Jones was able to slip in behind the Dreher defense, fake out the keeper and score an easy goal for a 1- 0 lead.

Kelly Smith, Emily Jeffcoat, and Jones gave Airport strong possession time and again in the Dreher half of the field. The Lady Eagles nearly scored in the 59th minute after Dreher keeper Madi Kazadi went to the ground but Reid made a fantastic play to clear the ball off the goal line. But the resulting corner kick was expertly bent by Jones to land neatly at the foot of Gray who flicked it into the goal, doubling the away side's lead.

Dreher did not give up as they again moved Reid and Fome up front for an extra offensive push late in the game. McKay Sharpe sent several nice balls toward goal but with tired legs, the rest of the Blue Devils never could quite catch up to them.

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