Making the most
Coudriet’s 3 goals lift Tigers past Lions
COCOLAMUS — East Juniata’s Marissa Coudriet registered all three of her team’s goals and her hat trick led the Tigers past Juniata Christian, 3-1, to win their final game of the season, a non-league girls soccer contest Monday.
“Any win is a good win, great for the seniors to go out with a win,” Tigers coach Tom Feltman said. “They’ve been just incredible leaders this whole year. They’ve experienced so much in the past and the legacy that they’re going to leave for the future is incredible.”
“Couldn’t have asked for better leadership from them,” Feltman continued. “Better role models, just everything about them has been top notch all year.”
The game seemed to be decided by which team could take advantage of its opportunities, as right from the opening whistle, it became apparent that both East Juniata and Juniata Christian looked very evenly matched.
Both teams were going blow to blow with one another trying to get the upper hand. The Tigers looked to strike first as Heidi Hoffman took a shot that was caught by Juniata Christian keeper Morgan Moyer.
Coudriet then stepped in and launched an 18-footer only to have Moyer tip the ball away and prevent a goal.
The Lions had a chance to put one in the net not long after that as the duo of Annika Martin and Peyton Burd came running down the field ending with a cross pass from Martin over to Burd who took the shot only for it to go wide of the net.
After nearly 20 minutes of scoreless soccer, East Juniata got on the board as Coudriet found the ball inside the Juniata Christian box and used her head to put the Tigers up 1-0.
A few minutes went by and East Juniata found itself in a corner situation where after the kick a scramble ensued inside the Juniata Christian box and Coudriet found the ball and sent it to the back of the net making it 2-0 lead for the Tigers.
But that didn’t seem to slow down the Lions one bit as they continued their attack on the East Juniata goal. Reanna Hoover hammered a direct kick that sailed over the net. Then near the end of the first half, Martin came charging toward the net and took a shot that was knocked away only to go right over to Burd who then fired a shot only to have it smacked away by the Tigers defensive line, leaving the score at 2-0 going into the break.
“I thought the first half we played really well,” Lions coach Todd Taylor said. “Just a couple times didn’t clear the ball down there and they were able to capitalize. But yeah we defintely hung with them in the first half.”
The never-say-die attitude finally paid off as within the first three minutes of the second half, the Lions went right onto the attack and eventually the ball was found at the feet of Burd who proceeded to score the goal and cut the lead down to 2-1.
A little while later, Coudriet made her presence felt again as with 22:05 remaining in the game she battled her through a tough Juniata Christian defensive line and managed to get the shot off and put in not only the team’s third goal of the game, but her third goal of the game as well completing the hat trick.
“She’s a work horse, she just gives you everything she has, every second of every game and every practice,” Feltman said. “She just won’t give up, won’t be denied mentality. That’s something that the rest of the girls could really look for and learn from and apply that to the future.”
But Juniata Christian just won’t go away quietly as the Lions were bringing the heat as again the dynamic duo of Martin and Burd continued to attack and put pressure on the Tigers defensive line.
However, the Lions still could not get the ball past the East Juniata goalkeeper Grace Hibbs who was doing everything she could to keep the ball from getting by her.
One such instance was when Martin launched a pass over to Burd who fired a shot that was caught by Hibbs.
The Lions kept the intensity up right up until the final whistle including a late attempt to score as Martin fought her way down toward the net and took her shot that was wide of the net. But the continued pressure and constant movement and never quit attitude really impressed their coach.
“The second half I thought we controlled a lot of the offensive play, we got that one goal in and then just weren’t able to capitalize on a couple other opportunities but I’m really proud of the way they played tonight,” Taylor said. “That’s the way this team is. It has been all year, they don’t give up. They just keep githing the whole way ’til the end and that’s really special.”
Juniata Christian falls to 12-5 but now will get ready to compete in the Allegheny Christian Athletic Association girls soccer playoffs that begin on Thursday at Columbia County Christian. The Lions will enter into the playoffs as the No. 2 seed and will play against Calvary Christian Academy.
Meanwhile, the Tigers finish the 2021 season with a record of 6-11-1. But coach Feltman is very appreciative of his four seniors who have played their final game as East Juniata Tigers in Coudriet, Cypress Feltman, Andrea Baer and Mar Andreu Bernart. Their coach said he wishes them all the best and thanks them for their contributions to the program.
“They have meant so much to this team and so much of the success of that we’ve had this year is a direct relationship and just the team itself they have just worked their tails off all season,” Feltman said.
East Juniata 3, Juniata Christian 1
EJ – Marissa Coudriet, 23:50; EJ – Coudriet, 18:45
JC – Peyton Burd, 37:51; EJ – Coudriet, 22:05
Shots: EJ 13-10. Corners: EJ 5-4. Corners: EJ-9 (Grace Hibbs), JC-11 (Morgan Moyer)