CRARYVILLE — The Maple Hill Wildcats upset the Greenville Spartans 1-0 Monday night to win the Patroon Conference Girls Soccer Championship for the abridged 2020 fall season.
The Lady Wildcats avenged the loss to Greenville last Friday by their male compatriots. The lone goal was scored by Alayna Fletcher thanks to an assist from teammate Kylie Roloson.
This contest was filled with intensity and high energy play throughout, and each team played with a sense of urgency on both sides of the ball. The Wildcats got an early chance just five minutes into the game when they had a steal at midfield. The pass from the attacker went too far for the striker to take a shot and rolled into the hands of Spartan keeper Chloe Ross.
This was the first time all season Greenville was not the overwhelming aggressor from the very beginning. Maple Hill gladly took the extra possession time they were working for, trying to wear down the Spartans early and keep them running all over the field.
The game reached the first mask break for the players midway through the first half, with the momentum swinging to neither side. Out of the stoppage, Greenville worked to get three consecutive corner kicks, but Maple Hill’s stellar defense prevented the Spartans from capitalizing. With under five minutes before halftime, the Wildcats caught a break at last.
Maple Hill managed to step into Greenville’s passing lanes at midfield, stole the ball, and Kylie Roloson passed the ball to her teammate Alayna Fletcher to cross up the goalie and find the back of the net to break the scoreless tie. The Spartans were shell shocked, and trailed for the first time all season as the first half ended.
Not long into the second half, Ella Mulholland got an opportunity for a shot on goal for the Spartans, but Mia Fleck made a brilliant save for the Wildcats. Greenville struggled to put together offense as time went on and they were desperate for a score.
Time continued to be on the Wildcats’ side, and all they needed to do was extend possessions and not make mental errors. Maple Hill knew the task in front of them, and were poised and composed as they looked to milk the clock.
The Spartans’ passes were getting erratic now, and going out of bounds for turnovers as a result of their heightened sense of urgency. At one point, Greenville essentially made their way down the length of the field from just throw-ins, as Maple Hill knocked a number of them out of bounds in a row.
A final chance for the Spartans came as Isabella Trostle dribbled through the Wildcats’ defense, but she could not maintain control of the ball all the way through the play to get a decent shot on goal. This last attempt by Greenville depleted what hope and energy they had left in this game, as the game clock neared the final minute.
Maple Hill played keep away for the final moments, and secured their 1-0 victory over the favored Spartans, and won the 2020 Patroon Conference Championship in this shortened season.