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'Cats flip calendar, Catoctin

October 02, 2007|By ANDREW MASON

WILLIAMSPORT - As forgettable as September had to be for the Williamsport girls soccer team is as memorable as the Wildcats hope this month will be.

Williamsport opened October - and its MVAL Antietam schedule - with a 4-2 victory over visiting Catoctin on Monday night, improving to 2-6 on the season while avenging last month's 2-1 loss to the Cougars (3-4, 0-2). (When conference teams play more than once in a season, only the final regular-season match counts as a conference game.)

"At 1-6, it would have been easy to give up, but the girls never stop working," Williamsport first-year coach Joe Burger said. "As I said in the beginning of the season, it's just going to take a while. And some of the things we've been working on the last few weeks are starting to click."

Everything clicked for the Wildcats in the first half Monday, as they outshot the Cougars 14-1 on their way to a 4-0 halftime lead.

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"We lost to them last time, and we knew it was going to be hard," said junior forward Hannah Petro, who led the way with two goals. "We talked before the game and decided we needed to step it up, and we did.

"We're definitely improving and coming together as a team. We're working hard and taking it seriously."

Petro gave the Wildcats a 1-0 lead in the sixth minute, scoring on an assist from Lauren McVicker.

Williamsport dominated the action the rest of the half, and finally got some results in the closing minutes.

In the 35th minute, Williamsport's Amy Taylor was tripped in front of the goal on a breakaway, and Jessie Palmer's subsequent penalty kick found the right corner of the net for a 2-0 lead.

Morgan Keplinger made it 3-0 with an unassisted goal two minutes later, and Petro completed the scoring in the closing moments of the half with another unassisted goal.

"They came out and didn't stop. They got those first two goals and then kicked us when we were down," Catoctin coach Hayley Howe said. "Kudos to them for not stopping, and good thing for them, because we came back in the second half."

A goal by Amy Eyler in the 49th minute cut the Cougars' deficit to 4-1 and another by her sister, Stephanie Eyler, made it 4-2 in the 75th minute.

As the Cougars turned up the pressure, the clock became their worst enemy.

"We needed one more half," Howe said.

Williamsport finished with advantages of 22-8 in shots and 7-2 in corner kicks. Lexi Barnes had three saves for the Wildcats, while Stef McGrath had 15 for Catoctin.

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