Girls' Soccer - Varsity
Kent School
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Win 7-0
In front of family and friends on Parents' Weekend, Taft turned in a complete 80 minutes to earn a 7-0 win over visiting Class A foe Kent. All in Taft uniform contributed to the win and the passion, heart, and identity was exhibited by everyone for the Big Red. Possession was at its best for Taft over the course of the day. The interplay between positions led to dynamic scoring chances and helped to control the pace of the game. In an exchange of one-touch passes and overlaps, Taft built up the wing from the center. Eveliina Kuitunen '20 put through Emilee Adami '19 with a gorgeous give-and-go one-touch ball that put Adami in on the Kent keeper. Adami's shot would find the post and Patience Kum '21 would beat her defenders to the ball and net the rebound for Taft's first goal. Defensive pressure and deft finishing would give Taft two goals before halftime, both scored by Amanda Graziano '21, who would end with three on the day. Paton Roberts '21 would pressure the back line to earn a turnover before playing Graziano in on a cross for Taft's second goal. For the Big Red third goal, Kuitunen would play in a dangerous corner that was not fully cleared by the Kent keeper and Graziano would head home the rebound to bring the first half score to 3-0. While offensive creativity was evident, it would be Taft's stout defense that led to so many opportunities moving forward. Led by the distribution of Taylor Jacobs '18, Taft was able to collect many clearances and find vulnerable spots of the field early in possessions. Juliana Yamin '18, Mary Alice Ewing '18, and Elly MacKay '20 locked down any Kent player advancing over midfield all day and established a tough tone for the Kent attack. All the backs in the game held the action on goalkeeper Katie Piechnik '18 to a minimum, who earned one save on the day in her fourth shutout of the season. Piechnik was quick off her line to stymie Kent attacks outside the 18. Starting the second half well was a key for the Rhinos after a strong first half. Adami ignited a goal just a minute gone in the second to establish the tone for the half. She closed down a goal kick and won a tough header and was collected by Jamie Howie '18. Howie pushed the Kent defense down to the endline off the dribble, turned, and played a ball to space at the top of the 18. Kuitunen was on her run and found the ball mid-stride and struck the ball into the far side-netting for her second goal of the season. It was a great play by Howie, Adami, and Kuitunen to get the second half started well. Kristin Manfreda '18, Kayla Thomas '20, Leigh Sharpless '18, and Anna Koziol '20 controlled the center of the field all day. Halle Wagner '20, Liz Barré '19, and Kristina Cornelio '20 were flyers on the wing. Mady Lander '19 was a rock at the back and got stuck in well in many tackles in the second half. Erina Piri '19 twice had great plays to earn off-center breakaways with the keeper to miss by mere inches both times. Natalie Hodak '21 earned her first career goal for the BIg Red when she beat her mark to the ball off of a Kuitunen corner and hammered home a volley. A full 80 minute performance was important for Taft as they get ready for the final two weeks of the season. Taft will take to the field again Wednesday when the travel with Westminster to play another Class A tilt. Kickoff will be at 3:00pm