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Despite its pressure against the defense conscious Knights, Marshwood found itself locked in a scoreless tie as time dipped under 10 minutes to play.
Elora Montogomery hit a crossbar and then, after a corner kick, the Hawks kept the ball alive in their end. A ball was centered from the left to inside the 18 and Wozny was there to strike the go-ahead score.
“There was a cross from outside the 18 and I simply tapped it back and I turned and I just shot, ” Wozny said. “Honestly, I was a little nervous because Raegan Kelly is a very good goal keeper. She is strong on top and on the ground. I knew it had to be a low shot in order to score. It tipped off her hands. I got lucky.”
“I saw a lot of people, a lot of legs,” Kelly said. “I saw her taking it and then I lost it, then I found it again.”
And nearly saved it.
Noble’s stellar defense, which is centered around the athletic Kelly in goal, also features Alicia Prak, Cassie Chabot, Brenna Frye and Emma Noel in the back. Their game plan was to let Marshwood penetrate deep into the Noble end and then defend and try for a quick counter strike.
Marshwood defended against the counter attack well.
In the first half, Kelly and company did a good job of fending off multiple attacks, most notably from Marshwood senior striker Marin Smith, as well as Casey Perry, Natalie Herbold and Angelina Bisson.
Bisson was involved in perhaps the two best chances, one in which she crossed the ball to Perry who put a shot on net inside the box that was knocked away by Kelly. It pinballed around the box before it was cleared.
The second one was a blast by Herbold from inside the 18 that Kelly knocked away and Bisson just missed putting the rebound in.
Noble had very few chances, but the two best were nearly money.
Sammy Couture, on a counter attack, crossed a nice ball from midfield that glanced off a Marshwood defender to Natalie Randall. Clavette alertly came out and got her hand on the ball as Randall tried to kick it in.
Couture also had a cross to Amy Fleming that the Marshwood defense, led by Katherine Page and Courtney Thim, was able to clear out.
“I didn’t realize how fast their backs were,” said Noble coach Mike Reil. “We couldn’t find a mismatch. We couldn’t put the ball in the net. … I felt like I overcoached. The kids played well, gave it everything they had. They never gave up.”
The Hawks, led again by the persistent Smith, had multiple scoring opportunities in the second half that Noble was able to stop until Wozny finally broke through.
“We knew coming in that Raegan’s their anchor,” said Marshwood coach Chelsea Watson. “She’s so athletic. We know we have to keep putting pressure on and hopefully we’ll get those loose ones in the box — finish one. It took almost the whole game, but all that matters is that you get one. Right?”
After that, the Marshwood did a good job of making sure the Knights didn’t get a good chance at an equalizer.
“I think the most important part is we kept pressure on them,” Wozny said. “We didn’t let them get the ball. We didn’t let them have space. We didn’t let them have an opportunity to score, get a breakaway.”
Marshwood plays at Bonny Eagle Friday night, while Noble goes to Gorham.