Just another day in Section One of Lancaster-Lebanon girls soccer.
While Conestoga Valley (1-0 league, 3-2 overall) was dealing Manheim Township (1-1, 3-1) its first loss of the year — 2-0 on a pair of goals from Maddie Delgado — Hempfield zealously protected two early goals and went on the defeat Cedar Crest, 3-1, Monday afternoon in Landisville.
And, Warwick (1-1, 2-2) kept pace, topping Penn Manor (0-1, 1-5) by 4-1.
Gabi Hollinger put the Black Knights (1-0, 2-1-1) on top early, burying a shot from the right side of the box high into the left corner of the goal in the fourth minute.
Lauren Weaver doubled the Knights advantage 21 minutes later, putting away Lizzie Yurchak’s corner kick service.
After Falcon freshman Abrielle Miller halved Hempfield’s advantage in the 57th minute, Black Knight junior Jess Weinholdt capped the scoring with just over 16 minutes to play.
“We moved the ball real well and created a lot of opportunities,” Knights coach Jason Mackey said.
“And we did a great job of defending, then opening up and connecting, playing off each other.”
A lot of the defending and connecting came from the midfield of Weinholdt, Yurchak, Megan Grube, Abby Burdyn and, off the bench, Amanda Price, Sophie Herman, Kira Mattes and Brianna Zickefoose.
“They didn’t play together last year,” Mackey said. “They’ve done a good job of growing together.”
The Black Knight middies had the better of play, never allowing the Falcons (0-1, 2-4) to sustain an attack and forcing them into too many “to who?” passes.
“That was, probably, what thwarted our attack,” said Crest coach Scott Steffen, who called Monday’s effort, “average”, after a spirited 2-1 double overtime, non-league loss to Elco Saturday in the Blue-Gray Cup.
“A better effort than we gave against E-town last week (a 3-1 loss), but not as good as we gave against Elco,” he said. “Not to take anything away from Jason’s kids. They played hard.”
The Black Knights owned an 18-4 advantage in opportunities in the first half — 36-9 for the game — a testament to their midfield dominance.
Five of those opportunities were corner kicks, three in the first half, and the Knights cashed their second of the game when Weaver settled Yurchak’s service and directed it into the net.
“We’ve done well off restarts,” said Mackey, “and, thankfully, capitalizing off of them.”
Sixteen minutes into the second half the Falcons brought an attack into the offensive third, with Daniele Hess testing freshman keeper Emileigh Antesberger.
Antesberger made the initial save, punching the ball away from the goal.
However the loose ball came to Falcon freshman Abrielle Miller, who didn’t hesitate to send it into the back of the net for her first career goal.
Seven minutes later Weinholdt stepped to an unclaimed ball, taking a touch before knocking it home.