SWANTON – Swanton girls soccer defeated Wauseon on Tuesday, 5-1, in front of their home crowd. The win got them one step closer to their goal of an NWOAL championship as they remain unblemished in the league. Wauseon fell to 0-3-2 in the league with the loss.
“We are coming back from a lot of injuries. We are still trying to get back with everyone on the team (healthy),” said Wauseon coach Jordanne Buehrer after the game. “
“Second half they kind of took what they needed to fix and fixed it. They worked really hard.”
A turning point in the contest came in the first half after Wauseon had trimmed the Swanton lead in half, 2-1. The Indian goal came with 6:51 left until the break when Torri Bost got her foot to a ball, still in the air, and fired it over the head of Swanton goalkeeper Amber Torres.
“I don’t know how she does it,” said Buehrer of the play. “She is always in the right place at the right time. She is a great athlete and she always works hard.”
However, Swanton showed off its experience by answering with a goal from Kirsten Truckor at the 4:26 mark to push their lead to 3-1. Then, with still 1:50 on the clock, Bridgett Harlett got a touch on a pass from Shae Hallowell and put it in the net to extend the Bulldog advantage to three.
“It was the seniors,” said Swanton mentor Jim Dickman of his team’s response. “They put a lot of pressure on. Taylor Pelland, Shae Hallowell, and Jordan (Furko) kept coming up from the back. It was really good.”
Avery Giguere had a couple of quality attempts for the Indians in the second half. With only 1:44 into half number two, she got a corner-kick and put it right on Torres who leaped up and made the save. Also, with 15:30 to go, Giguere got to a ball near midfield and sent it toward the net. However, Torres was there again to deny the attempt.
The Bulldogs then added a goal with 58 seconds remaining to put a bow on the victory.
With only three regular season games remaining, the Dogs’ biggest hurdle will be Saturday when they travel to Delta for a chance to clinch the NWOAL title outright.
“The thing is, we are a different team, too. Actually, we have more weapons this year then we had last year,” said Dickman on the match-up with the Panthers. “We have five (players) that are the top rank in Northwest Ohio for scoring.”
But, to dethrone the defending league champs, the Bulldogs will have to be ball hawks, according to Dickman.
“We need to play (for) possession. That is going to be key,” he said. “Our conditioning is way above everybody else’s that we’ve played. The only one that came close was O-G.”
Saturday’s game between the Bulldogs and Panthers is scheduled for an 11 a.m. start.
Wauseon is at Maumee on Saturday at 10 a.m.
Max Householder can be reached at 419-335-2010