Valley Sports Report
DRYDEN — Waverly took advantage of an own-goal by Dryden in the first half, and added an insurance goal midway through the second half in support of a strong defensive effort in a 2-0 win over Dryden here Tuesday night in IAC crossover girls soccer action.
“(Goalkeeper) Lea Cole had a lot of action tonight and she handled it all with grace,” said Waverly coach Tara Hogan.
“And, Olivia Robinson, Claire Clonch, and Bella Romano didn't let anything by them, and worked well to communicate with Lea (Cole),” added Hogan.
Cole registered 15 saves for the Lady Wolverines, who improve to 9-1-3 on the season, and will travel to Notre Dame Thursday at 4 p.m. for a divisional playoff game to determine the South’s representative in the IAC overall Large School title game.
With 10 remaining in the first half, sophomore Lea VanAllen took a pass inside the 18 from freshman Addison Westbrook and delivered a hard shot on goal. The Dryden keeper couldn’t control the shot, and a Purple Lion defender inadvertently punched the ball into the net, while attempting to clear it.
With 22 minutes remaining in the contest, VanAllen chased down a long ball over the Dryden defense from junior Kennedy Westbrook, and beat the keeper in a 1-on-1 to make it 2-0.
“Dryden had a solid defense, but once we found that ‘one’ ball that went through, and Lea VanAllen was able to get a great, well-placed shot,” said Hogan.
The Waverly defense stymied Dryden over the final 22 minutes to preserve the win.
“Kennedy Westbrook's ability of being able to send the ball over great distances really was key tonight,” noted Hogan.
“I would say that we were pretty evenly matched with Dryden and this was a good experience for us to help prepare for postseason,” she added.
Hogan said her team played well with the ball.
“We had another good possession game tonight.
“In the beginning of the game, we got caught thinking we had time to move and work, but Dryden is always quick to pressure,” noted Hogan. “Our second half saw even better passing and possession than the first.
“I was glad that every time we were on their side of the field, we had legitimate opportunities,” added Hogan. “We didn't waste shots, or force ones that weren't there. I felt that the girls move more up and down the field as a unit.”
Dryden falls to 7-3 on the season.
IN PHOTO: Waverly keeper Lea Cole. ... PHOTOS COURTESY OF MIKE LUBERTOWICZ.