Thursday, October 04, 2007

Girls' Soccer

Two Crosses in Three Minutes Equals One Big Win

Forward, Midfielder Combine to Propel Hawks Past Wildecats:
River Hill 2, Wilde Lake 0
By B.J. Koubaroulis
Special to The Washington Post
Thursday, October 4, 2007; HO11

River Hill senior forward Erica Suter knew she just had to get to the right place -- senior midfielder Janie Tankard would take care of the rest.

And sure enough, Suter headed two of Tankard's right-footed crosses into the net for goals in a 2-0 victory Tuesday over visiting Wilde Lake.

The goals came within a three-minute span of the second half and proved to be the difference for the fourth-ranked Hawks (7-1-1, 4-0-1 Howard 2A) against the Wildecats (5-3, 3-1 Howard 3A).

The win also kept intact River Hill's
two-season stretch in which it has gone
undefeated against Howard County competition.
Last year, the Hawks went 20-0 and won the Maryland 3A state title.

"Basically it feels like anything we do will be less than last year," said Tankard. "It doesn't intimidate us, but we feel it's a challenge that we can meet because we want to do it again."

Dropping to the state's 2A classification hasn't cleared the way for River Hill, but it has "eliminated some teams that were a problem for us from the equation," Tankard said.

By halftime, the Wildecats had outshot the Hawks 6-4, and neither team was able to convert on its two corner kick opportunities, leaving the game scoreless and the Hawks frustrated.

"They were beating us to every ball and seemed faster than us," Tankard said. "We haven't lost a county game in two years, and we realized that we don't want to lose it now."

River Hill outshot Wilde Lake 5-2 in the second half, and Suter's headers marked her fifth and sixth goals of the season.

It was also the eighth and the ninth time the Hawks have scored on a cross this season.

"Janie and I have played together for four years, so we have had this connection, and we can read each other really well," said Suter, who headed Tankard's first offering into the back right corner of the goal from seven yards in the 63rd minute. "We've just had so many connections over the years, and there will be more to come, I'm sure. We just know where each other is going to be."

Three minutes later, Tankard won a possession battle inside the penalty box and connected with a diving Suter for the 2-0 lead.

"Suter has an awesome header, and I know if I put the ball in there she's going to put it forward and come out with a goal," Tankard said.

River Hill goalkeeper Carylynne Hudson recorded seven of her 54 saves this season in the win.

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