WENDELL — WENDELLA wise person once said to never judge a book by its cover for appearances can be deceiving.
Corinth Holders girls soccer coach Alison Vetterl believes the same principle should be applied when examining the level of her teams play in its 5-1 loss to conference champion Roanoke Rapids Thursday night.
Despite missing out on a chance to share the conference crown with Roanoke Rapids and witnessing the Yellow Jackets Veronica Edmonds score all five of her teams goals, there were a lot of positives to take away from the play of the Pirates.
I really feel that was the best game we have played all season long as a unit, Corinth Holders coach Allison Vetterl said of her teams performance. The togetherness was there; the communication was there.
The score to me does not reflect on what the turnout of the game was.
A Tall Task: The Yellow Jackets entered the match against the Pirates riding a five game win streak, with all five victories coming in the form of shutouts.
Roanoke Rapids (13-3-1) wrapped up its fourth consecutive conference title with the win, capping a perfect 10-0 run through the NCC in which the Yellow Jackets outscored their opponents 66-7 including seven shutouts.
Predictable, Yet Unstoppable: There was no confusion in who the Yellow Jackets were trying to get the ball to as the Roanoke Rapids defenders and midfielders kicked the ball over the top of the Pirates defense any chance they could in hopes of linking up with star senior forward Veronica Edmonds.
Three of Edmonds goals came directly from racing onto the end of long balls played up towards her and converting breakaways into goals.
The speedy and physical Edmonds also found the back of the net on a direct free kick and yet another breakaway that started after she intercepted a Pirates pass in their own defensive third of the field.
A Beautiful Goal: Corinth Holders struck back after Edmonds had put the Yellow Jackets up 2-0 in the first half.
Defender Amanda Eckard won possession of the ball near midfield, carried the ball up and around a pair of Roanoke Rapids midfielders, and then slotted the ball out wide to Brooke Tyler.
Tyler lulled her defender with a hesitation move before getting to the end line and serving up a cross that Felice Hewitt rammed into the back of the net.
The goal that we had was beautifully set up, said Vetterl. The cross from the left side from Brooke Tyler to Felice Hewitt who headed it in was beautiful.
Turning Point: After Hewitts goal, Corinth Holders had all of the momentum until Natalie Browne sent a through pass behind the Pirates defense where Edmonds received it and beat Pirates goalie Rachel Witkin with just 1:22 left before halftime.
Corinth Holders was unable to create any more dangerous scoring chances the rest of the game.
Bright Spots: Witkin kept the Pirates (12-4, 8-2) in the contest as long as she could.
The freshman keeper withstood the Yellow Jackets pressure well and registered nine saves with seven coming from point blank range.
She stepped in and did a great job for us, Vetterl said of her keeper. I expected to see some nervousness from her but I never did. She made some outstanding saves.
Vetterl also applauded the play of midfielder Anna Capps, who was asked to play a more defensive role than usual to try to stop the high powered Yellow Jackets attack as well as Bella Iorio who did a nice job building the Pirates own attack.
The New Season: Corinth Holders earned the No. 2 seed from the NCC by virtue of finishing all alone in second place in the conference.
Seniors Morgan Hester and the Tylers (Brandi, Brittany and Brooke) will see at least one more game at home as the Pirates will open up the state 2A playoffs at home this week.
Were just going to have our ups and downs but, at this point, its a new season, Vetterl said. I told them to build on this game and we just move forward from here.