Lady Hilltoppers blank East
The R-S Central Lady Hilltoppers defeated the Lady Cavs of East Rutherford 4-0 on Thursday with a strong second half of play.
“We had a word of prayer at halftime,” R-S Central head coach Scott Rumfelt confessed. “Coach Owens and Tanner had a great game plan but we didn’t come anywhere near following (it) in the first half.”
In fact, the Hilltoppers (2-6) jumped on the board early in the match when the Cavaliers (1-8) sure-handed goalie, Justine Greene, bobbled an easy save allowing Leah King to punch it in for a 1-0 Hilltopper lead.
This would be the only score of the first half as both teams settled in and played excellent defense highlighted by Justine Greene’s spectacular save at the 10-minute mark.
“That footsave in the first half was impressive,” East head coach Neil Van Dyke noted, “She’s got Go-Go Gadget legs.”
Coach Rumfelt’s halftime sermon seemed to fire up the Hilltoppers as they started the second half with much more intensity.
A sharp pass by King to a streaking Emily McLauglin scored the first goal of the second half and extend the lead to 2-0.
After drawing a yellow card and spending a few minutes on the bench, McLaughlin was on the attack once more. She scored her second goal of the game by striking a kick across her body and into the left corner of the net for a 3-0 lead.
“McLaughlin is our star,” said Rumfelt, "But Leah King is the glue that holds everything together… She’s the emotional leader of our team.”
King’s influence was evident on the last scoring drive for the Hilltoppers.
King controlled the ball at midfield and then proceeded to weave her way effortlessly through defenders before dropping off a short pass to Haley Sims just in front of the Cavalier goal. Sims sent the ball quickly across to an open Emily Wilson who found the back of the next to push the final score to 4-0 for the Hilltoppers.
“That’s what good teams do, they make you pay for your mistakes and Central is a pretty good team,” Van Dyke said. “Consistency is a big issue for us. We let a few goals in we shouldn't have.”
The Lady Cavs play again Tuesday night at Patton while Central hosts Chase the same night. Both games are slated for 5:30 p.m.