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Top-seeded Hubs move into semis

October 30, 2008|By ANDREW MASON

It took Alluka Ogle-Moore 40 minutes to find her groove Tuesday night.

Fortunately for her and the North Hagerstown Hubs, soccer is an 80-minute game.

Ogle-Moore scored two goals in the second half, leading top-seeded North to a 4-1 victory over visiting Winters Mill in the quarterfinals of the Maryland Class 2A West playoffs.

"I was nervous at the beginning of the game," Ogle-Moore said. "I thought I was doing bad -- I had a lot of bad touches -- but I kept fighting.

"After I scored my first goal, I got more relaxed."

Her first goal gave the Hubs (12-2-1) a 2-0 lead in the 47th minute.

But that breathing room quickly vanished as Erica Diffendal scored for Winters Mill (7-5-1) three minutes later to make it 2-1.

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After the aggressive Falcons were repeatedly denied in their attempts to tie the match, Ogle-Moore returned the two-goal lead to the Hubs in the 71st minute.

While Maria Borland -- North's all-time leader in career goals with 52 -- was held scoreless, she still led the attack, assisting on both of Ogle-Moore's scores.

"Tonight those two really showed what they can do when they work together," North coach Rick Aleshire said.

"I'm just happy that we won the game," Borland said. "I know we beat Winters Mill earlier in the season (3-0 on Oct. 2), but they're a really good team. The score doesn't show how close the game was."

The Falcons finished with advantages of 13-12 in shots and 6-4 in corner kicks.

Lindsay Irving had five saves for North, while Lauren Weitzman had four for Winters Mill.

Caroline Kreiger gave the Hubs a 1-0 lead in the third minute on a 25-yard rocket shot.

"That kind of set the tone for the match," Borland said.

The Hubs capped the scoring in the 78th minute on a goal by Lauren Ryder, assisted by Sam Koterwas.

North will host the winner of tonight's match between Clarksburg and Liberty on Thursday at 7 p.m.

Being the No. 1 seed gives the Hubs home-field advantage throughout the region tournament, but assures them of little else.

"We've learned our lesson the last three or four years," said Aleshire, whose team is seeded first for the fourth straight year, yet still trying to claim its first region title.

"These are hard-fought games. You have to play 80 minutes."

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