It’s been a slow process, but Woodrow Wilson’s young girls soccer team is coming together nicely.
The Flying Eagles recorded their second consecutive shutout, and third in the last four games, with a 2-0 win over Huntington Saturday at Paul Cline Stadium.
“We’re starting four freshmen, along with one senior. It’s taken them time to build up and get confident,” coach Paulette Umberger said. “I thought they played really well today.”
Woodrow (10-7) defeated Oak Hill 4-0 Sept. 24, but fell 5-1 to St. Albans three days later. Undaunted, the team rebounded with a 5-0 win Wednesday against Riverside.
Earlier in the season, the Flying Eagles had beaten Riverside 2-1 at Quincy.
“We haven’t played badly this season, but we just didn’t all click at the same time,” Umberger said. “When you come in as a freshman, you aren’t quite sure what your role is.”
Woodrow’s defense, led by senior Savannah Barajas and freshman Mikayla Akers in the center, and sophomores Tanner Trostle and Tyler Wimbush on the outside, did not allow Huntington a single shot on goal.
Offensively, the Flying Eagles controlled play and took eight shots on goal.
The first five were stopped by Highlanders goalkeeper Ericka Budd. Elizabeth Gramling finally broke the deadlock with a goal in the 36th minute.
Rebekah Cook had charged down the left side of the box. She slipped a defender and fired to the right side of the goal. Gramling, slightly trailing the play, turned on the afterburners, raced by her defender and nailed the shot.
Nine minutes into the second half, Cook made things happen again with a curving corner kick that bounced into the middle of the box. Sarah Akers came up with the ball and launched a shot past Budd for a second score.
“We’ve been practicing this week, working on corners and direct and indirect kicks,” Umberger said. “You hope you’ll get one and score.”
Woodrow will wrap up its regular season with a match at Nitro Tuesday and another at home Thursday against Hurricane. Sectional play begins the following Tuesday in Princeton.
Woodrow Wilson 2, Huntington 0
Scoring: WW Elizabeth Gramling (Rebekah Cook assist, 36th minute), WW Sarah Akers (Cook assist, 49). Shots on goal: H none, WW 8 (Kaylee Hilliard 2, Cook 3, Gramling 2, Akers 1). Goalkeeper saves: H Ericka Budd 6, WW Emily Lane 0. Corner kicks: H 1, WW 2. Direct kicks: H 0, WW 1. Offsides: H 0, WW 1. Cards: None.