On Monday (Jan. 13), the girls soccer team from Scottsdale Chaparral traveled a few hundred miles for about a four-hour round trip to northern Arizona.
The Lady Firebirds had nothing to show for it, battling to a scoreless tie with Flagstaff High.
Chaparral vowed to get a better result when it played a home match on Wednesday night (Jan. 15) against Phoenix Sandra Day O’Connor.
O’Connor entered the match with only one loss, but went home with another as Chaparral had the upper hand from start to finish in a 5-0 victory.
Chaparral improved to 5-4-3 while Sandra Day O’Connor slipped to 12-2-1. Chaparral was No. 14 in Division I power points entering this week, while Sandra Day O’Connor was 13th.
“We had our opportunities against Flagstaff, but we couldn’t finish the job. It was frustrating,’’ said Chaparral coach Robyn Carlson. “We played much better tonight against a very good team.’’
Senior mid Olivia Struckman struck often in the first half, scoring a hat trick for a 3-0 lead at the break.
During the team’s halftime meeting, Carlson urged her players to keep up the pace and not fall back and coast for the final 40 minutes.
Chaparral goalkeeper Taylor Wolpe kept Sandra Day O’Connor from getting back into the match early in the second half by diving with a full extension to turn away a shot and keep the shutout alive.
The Lady Firebirds made it 4-0 with 20:56 left in the match when Hannah Wambaugh emerged from a scramble in front of the goal to boot the ball home.
The final goal came with 1:01 left in the match on a penalty kick by Alicia Jamison.
Sandra Day O’Connor did what it could to advance the ball deep into Chaparral territory, especially with the speed and footwork of forward Anna Goebel, but the Chaparral defense would come in to smother most of the attempts.
“We were quicker with the ball on offense and quicker on defense. We played good defense,’’ Carlson said.