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Cardinals hang on to top Tigers, 3-1

Forbes Road’s Madison Hays scores twice

Sentinel photo by MIKE GOSS
East Juniata's Kaylyn Walters moves the ball past Forbes Road's Kayla Baker in Wednesday afternoon’s non-conference field hockey game at East Juniata High School. Forbes Road won, 3-1.

COCOLAMUS — East Juniata survived an offensive barrage from Forbes Road in the second quarter and found the back of the cage in the third, but Madison Hays’ second goal of the afternoon sealed a 3-1 win for Forbes Road in a non-conference field hockey contest at East Juniata High School.

Forbes Road recorded 10 penalty corners, including six in the second quarter, but the Tigers’ defense stood strong as the Cardinals squandered most of their chances inside the East Juniata circle.

The game was scoreless until Forbes Road’s Emma Gelvin found the back of the cage, cleaning up a pass in front of the cage with 10:38 remaining in the second quarter. The Cardinals drew the first penalty corner of the game with 11:20 left in the quarter and were unable to score, but earned a second corner that set up the goal.

The second goal for the Cardinals came off another corner as multiple players fought for possession deep in the circle before Madison Hays was able to punch the ball in from the front of the cage past the Tigers’ goalie, Hailey Yeater.

Yeater played extremely well, making 18 saves in the contest, while fending off most of Forbes Road’s opportunities off of corners.

“We have a strong goalie in the back,” East Juniata coach Megan Hart said. “We need to work a little bit on our positioning, we get a little congested in the back and we are going to work on that this week at practice, but other than that, I’m pleased with that. With this only being our second game and us having games back-to-back-to-back there isn’t a lot of practice time in between. By telling them little adjustments in between the quarters and at halftime, I think it’s a big improvement.”

The Tigers (0-2, 0-1 Tri-Valley League) scored late in the third quarter as Karah Goss was able to break loose on the right side of the cage, firing a shot past Forbes Road’s Katie Waite to cut the deficit to 2-1.

East Juniata had some chances in the second half and it played better in transition, but the Tigers were unable to convert as they scored once on five shots. The Tigers were able to get the ball deep into the Cardinals zone and generated two corners but could not complete the comeback.

“We just need to finish on a little bit more of them and work on getting our passes up the line,” Hart said. “Other than that, we just need to make sure we get the ball moved up the field.”

After a tough opener against a top-tier opponent in Newport on Tuesday, Hart was pleased with how her team responded on Wednesday.

We played Newport who went to states last year and they are always tough along with Greenwood,” Hart said. “Coming from yesterday’s game to today– it’s a new day–and there is always room for improvement. We are just making changes from what we saw yesterday and implementing them today.”

Overall, Hart is hoping to see her team accomplish the little things as she looks to see continued growth out of the program in her first season.

“We had two goals at the start of the game and the first one was to pass to our teammates so that we could link up a little bit better, and the second one was for our forwards to get up ahead of the dribbler to make a pass,” Hart said. “With today’s game, overall, I’m pretty happy with that. Starting out as a new coach with a new group of girls and it being my first time coaching, we are starting out with some smaller goals and moving up to bigger ones that will eventually be to win.”

East Juniata returns to play today when it hosts Susquenita at 4 p.m.

Forbes Road 3, East Juniata 1

FR 0 1 1 1 –3

EJ 0 0 1 0 — 1

Goals: FR–Madison Hays 2, Emma Gelvin; EJ–Karah Goss. Assists: FR–Heidi Strait 2, Gelvin, Quincy McMath; EJ–Kaylyn Walters. Shots: 24-5, FR. Corners: 10-2, FR. Saves: FR–Katie Waite 3; EJ– Hailey Yeater 18.

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