NA Blanks Seneca Valley In Section Opener, 2-0
by Bob Orkwis
A pattern seems to be developing for the North Allegheny girls’ soccer team, and it’s a very good one. Play sound possession offense using team speed, take advantage of scoring opportunities when presented and severely limit your opponent’s scoring chances. That has been the case so far for the Tigers in four matches, and that was the case in their 4A Section 1 opener against Seneca Valley, a 2-0 shutout at Newman Stadium.
Junior Lucia Wells had the first opportunity to score for the Tigers, but her left footed shot was steered clear of the near post by Raiders goalkeeper Virginia Fronk in the game’s third minute.
North Allegheny broke the ice in the 29th minute, when Jadyn Coy forced a takeaway which led to possession for Abigail Stager. The sophomore forward fired a right footed strike from distance that found it’s way under the crossbar for her first goal of the season which gave the Tigers the lead.
The best opportunity all night for Seneca Valley came in the 33rd minute, when Kylie Nemcek directed a shot towards the near post, but senior Megan Miller came off her line to make the save and keep the game 1-0. Wells nearly made it 2-0 in the 38th minute, but her free kick from 20-yards out hit the crossbar.
Keep that scenario in mind, but at the opposite end of the field in the second half. Wells was fouled and had a direct kick from 20-yards out on the left wing. Her low shot was on frame but stopped by Fronk, who couldn’t handle the rebound. Sophia Palermo swooped in and slid the ball inside the near post to give North Allegheny a 2-0 lead in the 61st minute. The goal was the 2nd of the season for the senior midfielder.
The Tigers defense and Miller in goal did the rest to secure the initial section win of the season. Miller has posted four consecutive shutouts for the Tigers (4-0/1-0). North Allegheny had five clean sheets total last season. The loss was the first of the season for Seneca Valley (3-1-1/0-1). North Allegheny’s next section match was scheduled for this Thursday at Shaler, but that has been postponed. The Tigers are off until Saturday when they host Baldwin in a non-section matchup at 2:30.
With her first goal of the season and eventual game winner, Abigail Stager was named the Wright Automotive Player of the Game. Stager now has four career goals in her varsity career at North Allegheny.
Girls Soccer Summary vs. Seneca Valley, 9-14-21
|SCORE BY HALVES||1||2||FINAL|