Girls soccer strives to meet standards

Perhaps the most talented team at MacArthur, the girls soccer team has high expectations surrounding them. I myself ranked them #1 in the district just a month ago as they return 10 of the 11 starters from the 2015 team. With these standards in place, the team went 2-1(W-L) in the Northside ISD tournament and 2-1 in the most recent NEISD tournament.

The girls were ranked 2nd in the city in the San Antonio Express Newspaper(SAEN), behind Reagan, and dropped to 7th after their Northside tournament results. Going into this tournament, they looked to regain the chemistry that they built last year. They opened up with the SAEN 5th ranked team in the city, New Braunfels. Their defense was under fire the entire first half but were saved on a couple of occasions by goalkeeper Mary Cardone. The second half showed resilience against a Unicorns team that appeared to be in control. The eventual game winning goal came with 15:30 left in the contest, as Bella Vontoussaint hit Kyra Falcone at the top of the box. Kyra promptly turned, found space in the box, and finished.

The following day’s game would be far less stressful as the team played a young Taft squad at Toyota Field. The girls wasted virtually no time as Midfielder Ana Campa received the ball with yards of open space, she took her time and rocketed a shot from about 20 yards out that snuck just inside of the far left post to put Mac up 1-0 with 38:30 of the initial 40 minutes still remaining in the first half. The second half was more of the same as they tacked on two more goals, both by forward Kyra Falcone. The first was assisted by Analisa Pompa and the second by Erin Moore. Coach Stolhandske subbed in some of the younger girls to give them invaluable experience. The team appeared to be getting in a rhythm with this controlling win.

The third and final game came against Steele, who is the team’s biggest rival not in NEISD. In 2013 Mac beat them 3-0 in the second round of the playoffs, in 2014 Steele eliminated Mac from the playoffs by the score of 1-0 in the same round. Last year the two teams faced three(!!) times, with Mac winning two of the matches, including the playoff meeting. Unfortunately Steele came out on top this time by the score of 1-0. The girls struggled to possess the ball and Steele had a stranglehold over the game with constant pressure and numerous corner kicks.

The non district season always includes overreactions to wins or losses. The purpose of these early games is to improve regardless of results. Winning two of the three matches may be a let down to some, however they displayed spurts of dominance over New Braunfels and Taft, showing that their talent can match up with any team in the city.

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