All the scoring was done in the first 40 minutes, and when all was said and done it was Wauseon coming out on top, 2-1, over Archbold Thursday in Northwest Ohio Athletic League girls soccer action.
The win improved the Indians to 2-0 in the league while the Blue Streaks drop to 1-2.
It was the Wauseon program’s first win over their rivals in some time. “This is the first win that the seniors have had over Archbold. So it feels really sweet for them. A great way to send them out,” said head coach Brandon Schroeder.
Archbold got the game’s first goal as Emma Hall fired one into the back of the net at around the 26-minute mark of the first half. However, Wauseon answered back not even two minutes later off the foot of Rylee Vasvery to tie it at 1-1.
“It was quick,” said Archbold assistant coach Jennifer Kidder of the Indians’ response. “It was not even two minutes later. I think every team has a tendency to let their guard down just a little bit after you score a goal; you think you got that lead and you’re good. And it definitely wasn’t today. Props to them, they wanted it, they worked hard, they’re a nice team. They move the ball really well.”
The Indians started to control possession for much of the latter portion of the first half. They had more than one opportunity, including a shot rolled to the net by Macy Gerig that was scooped up by Archbold goalkeeper Reagan Kohler with 3:32 until halftime.
“I think just weathering kind of the emotions of the game,” Schroeder said on why his girls came out on top. “We knew we had a chance going in. We’ve been having some success. And so then just not letting the moment overwhelm us — and we did that.
“We kind of settled (in) I think the last 20 minutes or so of the first half. We really just started finding our feet. Just the little things. Playing simple ball and keeping possession. Which has been our hallmark.”
Wauseon scored the go-ahead and final goal of the game with under a minute to go in the half. Standing at the top of the right-corner of the penalty area, Vasvery lofted a ball beautifully that cleared Kohler and went into the left side of the net for the 2-1 Indian lead.
“We have a lot of girls that are just really dynamic and Rylee, as you mentioned, is fantastic. If we get her some space and separation, there’s girls that we want taking shots and she’s one of them,” stated Schroeder.
The Streaks were more of the aggressors after half. But, Wauseon’s Kadence Carroll did have a look with around 30 minutes remaining that Kohler was able to save.
Not even two minutes after that, Archbold’s Sophie Rupp had a breakaway and blasted one at the net, the shot hitting the crossbar and sailing out of play.
Leah McQuade also had some chances for the Streaks. Her breakaway at the 20:43 mark, however, went right to Wauseon keeper Marie Hutchinson.
Hutchinson made six saves total.
“I think if we came out and played from the beginning of the game until the end the way we did the last half — I mean we played a great second half of soccer. We definitely possessed the ball better. If we would have played like that from the beginning, I think we would have won that game. That’s how it goes. It didn’t fall our way today,” explained Kidder.
With all the pressure Archbold was putting on at the end, Schroeder will no doubt take his team hanging on to the one-goal victory.
“Whenever you’re down in a game like this, it’s kind of everything is on the line,” he said, speaking of Archbold. “Our league is so competitive right now, that a tie can make the difference between finishing in first or runner-up. And so, of course they’re gonna push hard. They pushed everything they had up there. So just being able to be disciplined, and we know we want to play out then up, out then up.”
Aariyah Hallett and Ellie Rodriguez had the assists for the Indians.
The Indians were home again on Saturday when they bested Toledo Central Catholic 7-2. The Streaks were shut out 6-0 at home against an undefeated Ottawa-Glandorf team.
Wauseon has a NWOAL match on the road at Evergreen on Tuesday at 5 p.m. Archbold welcomes Delta that same day.
Reach Max Householder at 419-335-2010.