Finkenbiner’s hat trick leads Huskies
Dominant shooting holds CD East
LEWISTOWN — Mifflin County took care of business Monday, defeating Central Dauphin East 6-1 in a Mid-Penn Conference girls soccer game.
“It was good,” Huskies coach Barrett Knepp said. “It was good to get some younger players in there as well tonight. It was nice to rest some of our players as well.”
The Huskies came into the game without top scorer Aubrey Strohecker. However, that did not seem to slow down the offense as Mifflin County came out swinging and immediately put the pressure on the Central Dauphin East net.
Maddie Finkenbiner tried to get the ball rolling within the first few minutes of the game as she sent a cross pass to Brynn Knepp who took the shot only for the ball to tip over the cross bar.
But the intensity did not stop there. Minutes later Sarah Henry found sophomore Knepp, who launched the ball to the top left corner of the net to put the Huskies ahead 1-0.
Finkenbiner then put the team on her back as she hustled downfield and blasted the ball to the back of the net to make it 2-0 Mifflin County.
Minutes after that, and a little help from Knepp, Finkenbiner had a one-on-one opportunity against Panther goalkeeper Kayla Proch. Proch came charging out of the net but a nice move by Finkenbiner created a wide open shot, which she connected to make it a 3-0 ballgame.
Then with 21:22 remaining in the first half, Kirsten Milliron made a pass to Knepp, who then turned and fired for her second goal of the game, giving the Huskies a four goal lead.
The fifth and final goal of the opening half came from Finkenbiner in an unusual way. Finkenbiner had three straight shot opportunities with the first being knocked away by Proch; the ball bounced back to Finkenbiner, who took another shot that smacked off the cross bar; When the ball made its way back to Finkenbiner a third time, she headed the ball into the goal for the hat trick.
“She played well, she played really well,” Knepp said. “She has had some key goals for us this against Palmyra and against Hershey so she has had some pretty good goals for us.”
Another interesting statistic for Mifflin County in the first half was that the Huskies had ball control on the Panthers’ side of the field for 85 percent of the half. In fact, Mifflin County outshot Central Dauphin East 21-1 in the first half.
“We had a good night. We moved the ball around well and we were definitely able to have some success up front, which is good,” Knepp said.
The pressure did not let up from the Huskies in the second half, although they were trying to switch things up a bit and give some players rest in the half and also use players in positions that they normally don’t play.
That’s when senior Kate Knable from attacked the net, creating a few chances to add onto the lead. Knable’s first attempt to score sailed over the goal. Not long after, Knable came charging again but her shot on goal was stopped by Proch. Another big opportunity came for Knable to score after a deep pass from Danielle Warfel but again she was denied.
The constant pressure eventually paid off as Knepp found an open Elise Wagner, who hustled her way toward the net and finished off the goal to make it 6-0.
“We mixed some things around in the second half trying to give some girls a break and played some of the younger players,” Knepp said. “It was a little bit sloppier in the second half but we did what we needed to do.”
The Panthers scored on a pass by Taylor Redensky to a sprinting Emily Calamia.
Overall, the Huskies kept the Panthers in check defensively, outshooting them 10-2 for the second half and 31-3 in thegame.
“We were pretty solid defensively until we changed some things up,” Knepp said. “Emily Calamia, she’s a solid player for them all around. She can play anywhere, she’s super fast and that’s what got us beat.”
Mifflin County (6-4-1, 5-2-1) travels to face Juniata on Wednesday.
Mifflin County 6, Central Dauphin East 1
MC — Brynn Knepp (Sarah Henry), 36:18; MC — Maddie Finkenbiner, 32:55; MC — Finkenbiner (Knepp), 29:31; MC — Knepp (Kirsten Milliron), 21:22; MC — Finkenbiner, 19:53.
MC — Elise Wagner (Knepp), 12:31; CDE — Emily Calamia (Taylor Redensky), 7:14.
Shots: MC 31-3. Corners: MC 6-0. Saves: MC-2 (Bailey McNitt), CDE-25 (Kayla Proch).