Wednesday, December 11, 2013
By Mark Jeanneret / Special to the Press Herald
CAPE ELIZABETH – Kathryn Clark used her breakaway speed and determined disposition to score a pair of goals to help carry Cape Elizabeth to a 3-0 win over Greely in a Western Class A girls' soccer quarterfinal game Tuesday night at Hannaford Field.
The fourth-seeded Capers (14-1-1) face No. 1 Windham (14-0-1) in a regional semifinal 6 p.m. Friday.
Clark got the offense rolling after the teams played through the first 30 minutes of the game without much in the way of offense.
After numerous long-bomb passing attempts were foiled by Greely defenders, Cape Elizabeth finally broke through when Madelaine Riker connected with Clark just as she broke through the defensive line. The sophomore used her speed to stay ahead of a group of pursuing Rangers and released the ball just in time to beat charging goalkeeper Caton Beaulieu for a 1-0 lead.
"I was just working on making runs," said Clark. "I knew that if they were standing stationary on their line and I was on my feet that I could most likely beat them to the ball if I really wanted to, so I just tried my best to get there."
The best chance for No. 5 Greely (10-4-2) to score came eight minutes into the game when Izzy Hutnack found herself free in prime scoring position. Hutnack released a good shot but Cape defender Emily Sidle got in front of the shot to deny the opportunity.
The Capers struck again with 6 seconds left in the half to go up 2-0. Greely was awarded a pair of corner kicks as the opening half drew to a close.
After successfully defending both, Cape quickly turned the ball upfield. Katherine Breed sprinted through midfield and struck a solid shot on goal. Beaulieu made the initial save but the ball squirted free and Katherine Briggs swooped in to score into the open net.
"I didn't see the second goal as being that big of a problem," said Greely Coach Michael Kennedy, "because if you score right away (in the second half) then they play defense for the rest of the half and you have to put one in.
"At halftime we felt very confident. The second one wasn't the problem. It was the third one that was a problem and us not scoring in the first five minutes."
Clark's tenaciousness was on display 16:47 into the second half as she gave the Capers a 3-0 advantage.
This time she took off after a loose ball deep in the Greely end, forced her way through a pair of defenders and banked a shot in off the crossbar as she tumbled to the turf.
"She has energy across the field," said Capers Coach Luke Krawczyk. "Most importantly, she wants to get to the ball before the other team. She's a little bit nasty as she runs to the ball and is very aggressive."
Despite being awarded six corners, Greely was unable to create a threatening scoring chance on Cape goalkeeper Mary Perkins in the second half.