Muskie girls gunning to win title
Kenora almost assuredly can feel its reign as NorWOSSA girls’ soccer champs careening toward an unpleasant ending—with the Muskies more than willing to author the Broncos’ demise.
Fort High is in the catbird’s seat after completing a 4-0-2 regular season with a 3-2 win over the Dryden Eagles and a 5-1 romp of the host Broncos on Friday.
“We are very excited, and winning NorWOSSA and going to OFSAA is one of our team goals,” noted Muskie head coach Alyssa Holliday.
“The girls really want this so they are going to go out strong and do their best,” she added.
“They want this win and so do their coaches.”
Fort High only needed a win or two ties Friday to nail down to first place—and wasted no time accomplishing their mission against what turned into a nail-biter against Dryden.
Katie Sinclair and Myla Angus joined forces to set up rookie Janelle Kaemingh early in the first half for a 1-0 lead.
Claire Hyatt then continued her red-hot success streak with penalty kicks by blasting another one in later in the half to double the advantage by halftime.
A gritty Eagles’ squad came out determined in the second half and tied the game on a penalty kick of its own and then a close-in shot.
But in a co-operative effort of old and new Muskies, veteran Maryam Seid sent a textbook cross to rookie Jessica Steele, who redirected it into the net in the final minutes for the game-winner.
“The girls played so well in this game,” lauded Holliday.
“They kept their cool and made smart plays.”
With only an undefeated record to play for, Fort High came out somewhat off its game against Kenora in the first half and trailed 1-0 on an early goal.
“I told the girls at half that we needed to go out there and do our best, make smart plays and passes, and take shots,” recalled Holliday.
“[Assistant coach] Nicole Avis told them they needed to be goal hungry.”
That hunger turned the Muskies into more like famished sharks that stumbled into a smorgasbord of plankton.
Seid tied the score in the opening minutes of the second half before Hyatt went to work.
Following another penalty kick tally to make it 2-1, Hyatt sniped her second of the game shortly thereafter to stretch the lead to two.
Holliday tinkered with the lineup at that point and inserted Sierra Cousineau into the striker position.
The move paid off handsomely as Cousineau fired home another goal within minutes for a 4-1 lead.
Kaemingh then closed the scoring—sending the ball home after a set-up from Hailey
Beaudry and Maggie Jean.
In Dryden last Wednesday, the Muskie girls began the day with a 2-0 whitewashing of the Broncos.
Angel McCormack sent a long entry pass into the 18-yard box that found the awaiting foot of Sinclair, who knocked it in 30 minutes into the game.
In the second half, the Muskies controlled possession of the ball and added an insurance marker when Hyatt gathered in a corner kick and scored.
Amy Penner, who will get the start in today’s NorWOSSA final, earned the shutout.
The second game against Dryden began well enough as Sydney Radigan came up with a great goal to put Fort High in front.
But shortly thereafter, Radigan was taken down on a hard tackle by an Eagles’ player and suffered a badly-sprained ankle that kept her out the rest of the game and for all of Friday’s action.
Dryden added insult to injury with two goals against Muskie keeper Liz Allan before halftime to go up 2-1.
Penner relieved Allan to start the second half and kept Fort High within hailing distance of the Eagles.
The break the Muskies needed came late in the game, when a Dryden penalty inside its 18-yard box led to Hyatt burying the free shot behind the Eagles’ keeper.
Radigan practised yesterday, but her status for today’s title game was questionable.
The last team left standing today will head to Collingwood for the OFSAA ‘AA’ provincial showdown June 5-7.