Times Sports Editor
There is no love lost between Northview and Sullivan's girls' soccer teams. The two have battled tooth-and-nail for conference and sectional championships over the past several years with the Golden Arrows getting the best of the Knights more often than not.
On Wednesday evening, it was the Knights' turn, getting a goal from Jenny Woodcox late in the first half and making it stand up the remainder of the way.
"We lost a lot of seniors from last year," said coach Tony Alstott. "But this year's group of seniors played a lot as juniors and they were part of the championship."
The Arrows were well aware that Northview won the WIC Championship last year and had plenty to prove.
Each team shared some quality chances in first half action as Sullivan got a combination from Casey McGlasson ahead to Christina Haag. She pushed the ball ahead to Caitlin Hauger, whose shot was corralled by Northview's Rachel Alstott 10 minutes into the game.
Alstott played perhaps her best game of the season in net for the Knights. She came out of the net on a breakaway six minutes later by Haag.
"Rachel stepped it up for us," said Alstott of his senior keeper. "We've worked with her to be more aggressive. Her biggest asset is her communication skills and there was a couple of times when she called off the fullback to make the play."
As Sullivan pushed the ball into the offensive zone, the Knights got strong play from their defenders, Cayla Yockey, Tiffany Young, Hannah Pond and Ashley Clarke. The Arrows attempted to use their speed to get past the Knights, but were halted time and again.
Northview used its own speed to get an attempt as Lindsay Woodcox passed ahead to Krista Stearley, who couldn't quite get past her defender before being shouldered off the ball. The Arrows countered back and Yockey was there to head aside a shot by Caryssa West.
With just under nine minutes remaining in the half, Northview got the opening it needed off a throw in by Yockey. Carlee Bell settled the pass and spun to find Woodcox open just outside the penalty area. Her nifty footwork through a few defenders gave her a clear shot that she hammered into the left side of the net.
"Jenny really willed that goal in. She had maybe four or five girls on her and delivered a strike," said Alstott.
Sullivan came out fired up in the second half, quickly getting a shot off a direct kick that Alstott saved. Bonnie Froderman then followed by blocking a point blank shot to keep the shutout intact.
The Arrows kept the pressure on the Knights' defense over the course of the second half setting up crossing passes into the box.
Northview's defense was more than up to the task, staying cool and making the necessary plays down the stretch for the victory.
"Tiffany, Cayla and Rachel in goal were all good stoppers and really did a good job of denying," said Alstott. "(Sullivan) had a lot of shots and played a great game."
The Knights (2-3 overall, 2-0 WIC) travel to Greencastle for a 10:45 a.m. game on Saturday. On Monday, Sept. 15, Northview hosts Monrovia for the "Let's Kick Cancer" game. The American Cancer Society and Northview's SADD organization will be represented and will be taking donations.
Nv -- Jenny Woodcox
Next game: Northview travels to Greencastle on Saturday for a 10:45 a.m. game.