NBL girls soccer: Cardinal Newman hangs on against Santa Rosa

By ALLIE COLOSKY
FOR THE PRESS DEMOCRAT

Cardinal Newman held off Santa Rosa, 2-1, in a North Bay League match Thursday night at Santa Rosa.

“After the first 15 minutes of the game, I thought they were the better team,” Cardinals coach Paul Dixon said. “They deserved something out of the deal.”

Cardinal Newman's Dani Gilson successfully defends the ball against Santa Rosa's Melanie Mathewson during their game on Wednesday, Sept. 18, 2013. (Conner Jay / The Press Democrat)

Cardinal Newman’s Dani Gilson successfully defends the ball against Santa Rosa’s Melanie Mathewson during their game on Wednesday, Sept. 18, 2013. (Conner Jay / The Press Democrat)

Cardinals forward Megan Moore scored two more goals in the first 10 minutes to bring her team-leading total to 12 this season.

Moore’s first goal came in the opening minutes. A cross from Katrina Cline found Moore’s foot and ricocheted into the top left corner of the net.

The sophomore’s second goal came 6 minutes later, when she settled a ball out in the box and sent it sailing into the back of the net.

“Defense passes the ball well and we need to start holding the ball more and playing off that,” Moore said.

The Cardinals packed in defensively with senior captain Jackie Dutton the anchor in the middle. But Santa Rosa gained momentum and consistently pressured the Cardinals’ defense.

“We were really just trying to stay tight on our marks and not let them get a shot off,” Dutton said.

The Panthers continued to push the ball at the end of the first half but could not convert.

Quincy Barnett sent a header from teammate Melani Avalos over the crossbar, and Maddie Batchelder had a hard shot on goal but failed to capitalize.

Santa Rosa continued to put pressure on Cardinal Newman’s defense in the second half.

The Panthers played a dangerous ball into the Cardinals box off a free kick in the 55th minute but again didn’t score.

The Cardinals defense attempted to keep the ball out of the its half of the field, but kept “getting pounded left and right,” Dutton said.

Finally, the Panthers found the back of the net in the 68th minute when Laetitizi Hernandez chased down a long ball over the middle and sent it solidly past Cardinals goalkeeper Gabby Singler.

“She’s just one of those players that sets fire,” Panthers coach Nikki Kumasaka said of Hernandez. “We needed a spark up there and that’s exactly what she did.”

Santa Rosa continued to press for the equalizer but was denied as the clock ran out.

Santa Rosa fell to 5-4 overall. Cardinal Newman improved to 5-1.

“We were fortunate to come away with the win,” Dixon said.

 

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