Eagles make statement with 4-1 win over Proctor
ARLINGTON — At 7-5 coming into Tuesday night's game against rival Proctor, the Arlington girls soccer team wanted to make a statement as the regular season comes to a close.
Consider it done.
On the strength of two goals from Lilian Fuchs and tough defense, the Eagles topped Proctor, 4-1, on a chilly night at Werner Field.
"It was a big win for us," said Arlington coach Aaron Wood. "To come out and win tonight, hopefully it instills the confidence in our girls that this wasn't a fluke, this is our potential."
Lilah Ward got the Eagles on the board in the 14th minute, finding some space in the defense and firing a shot past Proctor goalie Rachel Stuhmueller.
"The first couple goals had nice ball movement, it went through [three players] before getting to Lilah," Wood said. "That's really nice technical soccer in the last 30 yards. It's nice to have multiple goal scorers, a luxury in Division IV soccer."
Six minutes later, the Phantoms tied it up. Off a throw-in deep in the Arlington end, senior captain Maddie Flanders passed it to Maggie McKearin, who headed it past Denita Moore.
Fuchs made it 2-1 with seven minutes remaining in the first half, getting an assist from Emma Hoover and finishing off a quality shot. It was her 12th goal of the year.
"She had a hand in all four goals tonight," Wood said. "She's been playing like a beast lately and it's been fun to watch her confidence grow as she's gotten more and more comfortable here."
Proctor nearly tied it again in the last minutes of the half, but a shot went off the crossbar and Arlington cleared it out after a scramble.
In the second half, Moore kept it 2-1 with a diving save on a hard shot from Flanders and then with 17 minutes left, Ward came up with a defensive save.
It was at this point Wood and assistant coach Hooper Pickering decided they were going to play it more defense-minded.
But then not a minute later, Haley Mattison had a look at goal that was stopped by Stuhmueller, but the rebound came out to Fuchs, who cleaned up the mess to give Arlington a 3-1 lead.
"They started to press us more in the second half, and I told Hooper, 'I don't know if two goals is going to win this,'" Wood said. "We changed and within 30 seconds we scored to make it 3-1. I thought it was a really nice win by our team."
The Eagles clinched it with 6:01 left, when Haley Mattison hit a shot that went off Stuhmueller and in.
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