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NEWPORTâ€“In the second half of the Crusader doubleheader, UCA's boys (5-4-3) came out with a defensive strategy aimed at stopping the high-scoring Cabot Huskies (9-2-1).
Their plan was executed quite well in the first half, allowing just a goal, but in the second, Cabot tacked on four more, winning the contest 5-2.
"They gave me absolutely everything they had," said coach Alyssa DeLaBruere. "When we into this game I told them they would need to give everything they had to beat this team and they did that. Although we didn't win, I think it was a very evenly matched game."
The Huskies wasted little time getting on the scoreboard.
Darren Celley notched the first of his three goals just two minutes into the game, staking his squad to a 1-0 lead.
UCA responded with a counter-strike from Ji Kim, but Cabot's Seth Herrick made the stop.
Undeterred, UCA continued to gnaw away at the Huskies.
Dale Martell had the best game I've seen him play all year.
He was aggressive when necessary, passive in protection when the situation called for him to be, and where he has been hiding that howitzer of a foot of his is the million dollar question.
In the 17th minute Dale unleashed one of the hardest shots that has been seen by this reporter in quite some time.
It had top-shelf written all over it in multiple languages, but I guess the rain had smudged the ink and it rang off of the crossbar instead.
Back in the UCA end of the field, Chris DeLaBruere regrouped from the early Cabot tally and was outstanding, making multiple highlight reel saves, worthy of some time on Sportscenter.
With time winding down in the first, the Crusaders were awarded a direct kick just outside the 18.
Martell let loose another blast, tying the game at 1-1 before time expired.
"I just kept my head down on the free kick and kicked it over their defense and that was it," Martell said.
Said DeLaBruere, "The is exactly what we needed to give us motivation rolling into the second half. What a beautiful shot"
While UCA had the motivation, it was the Huskie offense springing to life in the second as Celley repeated his previous performance, once again scoring early in the half.
He completed the hat-trick later in the second, putting Cabot up 3-1.
Limoge almost brought the score to 3-2, but Herrick again was there with the save.
With the score now 4-1, Ji Kim put in his own penalty-kick rebound to make it 4-2.
Cabot added another one late, finalizing the score at 5-2.
DeLaBruere stopped seven shots, as did Herrick.
UCA will be back under the lights on Wednesday, taking on Concord at 6:00.