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DERBYâ€“The Craftsbury Chargers visited UCA for the rubber match of their three game season series. UCA's Lady Crusaders had taken the first game at Craftsbury early in the season. Earlier this week, UCA went back to Craftsbury and were defeated solidly by a score of 5-1. Their final match-up would prove to be an exciting contest.
With the UCA home field of Gardner Park being visibly under water in both goal boxes, the game had to be moved to the NCUJHS field in Derby. The winds during the game were a big factor, with both teams fighting their force, struggling with punts into the wind, and lofting balls that easily flew back to where they came from when kicked into the wind.
The Craftsbury team won the coin toss and elected to use the wind to their advantage in the first half. The half was dominated by Craftsbury, with most of the play being executed in UCA's defensive end. The Lady Crusaders were able to hold them off until 45 seconds to go in the first, putting the Chargers on the scoreboard with a 1-0 lead at halftime.
"I was pleased with our intensity, and the way we kept our focus while battling the wind. Having just been beaten by them earlier in the week, I was worried my girls might not be able to come out as strong today. 1-0 at halftime was a good sign, I thought. I knew changing fields in the second meant we'd have the wind on our side," explained Coach Sarah Roy.
While the winds worked for them, the Lady Crusaders couldn't seem to put solid momentum together into finishes in the goal.
"We had a few great opportunities, but just couldn't finish them," said Roy.
Although the second half saw more even play. the Chargers, once again, scored with less than a minute remaining in the game, sealing the victory with a final score of 2-0.
For UCA, Sydney Whipple was a standout in goal, racking up 20 saves on 23 shots.
UCA has another tough week of games ahead, playing at Canaan on Tuesday, hosting Richford on Wednesday, and finishing their season at Concord on Saturday. Their current record is 2-8.