HARTFORD – The Lady Rangers traveled to Hartford Friday afternoon to face off against the #2 seed Hurricanes, they battled hard, but in the end it wasn’t enough as they fell 1-0.
The game started off rough as a communication breakdown inside the Ranger’s 18 was cleaned up by Mariah Palmer, putting her team on top 1-0, just 90 seconds into the contest.
On the ensuing kick-off however, the Rangers went up the field with Tyrah Urie feeding Caitlyn Bernier, for what was thought to be the tying goal. But, the goal was waived off because of an offside call.
Mid-way through the first half sisters Amber and Caitlyn Bernier seemed to have figured out the Hurricanes defense, as they weaved their way up the field. The ball was later pushed through to Urie, who missed wide right with the shot attempt.
10 minutes to go in the first, Hartford looked as if they were going to extend their lead as Devon Day broke in untouched through the defense and shot from point blank range, but Jordyn Cowles stepped up big and made a sprawling save to her left.
Throughout the first half the Hurricanes dominated the play. The played a much more physical type of soccer than the Blue and White was used to and if they were going to come back, they were going to have to learn to adjust to the level of play.
4 minutes into the second half, the game was stopped because the Hartford time official was found to have been stopping the clock in order to preserve precious seconds from running off the clock. This was not the only instance of bad sportsmanship in the game, however. The ball officials would race to get the ball into the Hurricane players, but when it came time for the Lady Rangers to get the ball, they would move to the side and let them race after it themselves.
It looked as if the Blue and White would finally knot the game midway through the 2nd half, but the Miranda Beaudry header off the Urie corner just missed the crossbar. Another Urie corner, 3 minutes later, was kicked harmlessly out-of-bounds.
With the clock ticking under 10 minutes, the Hurricanes began to play frantic, allowing Lake Region to make numerous runs through their zone and pressure the keeper Jenn Mariotti.
Urie broke in all alone on the keeper, but the play was whistled dead because of an offside, but it was a blown call on the part of the officials because the person they called the penalty on was not involved with the play.
The Blue and White had their chances late, but it was not enough and the game ended in favor of the Hurricanes 1-0.
Coach Brad Urie after the game gave credit to Hartford saying they were, “very skilled.” But he would go on to also say that his team, “played every bit as well as they [Hartford] did and that our team [Lake Region] is every bit as good as any team in this division.”
“I am very proud of my girls and proud of my seniors. I know this is a tough last day for them. But, to be honest, we have nothing to hang our heads about, we never gave up and we never quit,” Urie would add.
The loss ends Lake Region’s season with a final record of 9-6-1 and they will say goodbye to their 6 graduating seniors. But, the Blue and White made their presence known in Division 2 that they can play and compete with any team.