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Crusaders edge game Beavers

Jesuit beats Beaverton 3-1 to keep sole possession of first in the Metro
by: Miles Vance HIGH KICK – Beaverton’s Lauren Wallberg (right) knocks the ball away from Jesuit’s Lexie Krueger during the Crusaders’ 3-1 home win on Oct. 5.

BEAVERTON - The margin for error for the youthful Jesuit girls soccer team may be slimmer than ever this year.

But the Crusaders are holding up just fine so far.

Jesuit won another thriller on Oct. 6, beating Beaverton 3-1 at Jesuit High School to close the first half of Metro League play at 4-0-1 (8-0-1 overall) and in sole possession of first place. And while Jesuit's margin against the Beavers was two goals, it led just 2-1 until Maddie Kincaid put away an insurance goal with 3 minutes, 1 second left to play.

'We knew they were going to come looking for a hard game … so we just wanted to make sure we played our game, got the ball on the ground and played with each other like we know how to do,' said Kincaid, who scored two goals and assisted on the other.

'Everyone gets up for us and we come in expecting that so we wanted to make sure that we bring our best,' added Jesuit senior Claire Wilson.

Beaverton, meanwhile, fell to 1-3-1 in league play (4-4-1 overall), but left convinced of its ability after challenging the league-leading Crusaders.

'We knew Jesuit was a good team and it was a lot of fun to play against them. I really enjoyed it,' said Beaverton freshman Cecelia Fondren, who scored her team's lone goal seven minutes into the second half. 'I was really nervous but also really excited.'

'We just had to connect our passes and build our chemistry with the team together and play together and see what we can do,' added Beaverton sophomore Robyn Schmutzer. 'It was really exciting.'

The Beavers held their own early in the first half too, but Jesuit got the go-ahead goal when Kincaid followed up a shot by Molly Petrusich and knocked it home for a 1-0 lead with 22:06 to go in the half.

Jesuit struck again four minutes later when sophomore Dani Brown took a pass down the line from Kincaid and scored to make it 2-0 with 18:02 remaining in the opening period.

'One of the things we've been working on lately is playing as a team so it felt really good to get those first two goals working together in the first half,' Wilson said.

Beaverton made it exciting, though, cutting Jesuit's lead in half and moving within 2-1 on Fondren's goal. There, with 32:50 remaining in the contest, senior Lauren Wallberg took the ball down the left sideline, then crossed it to Fondren in the upper left portion of the Jesuit penalty box. Fondren controlled it there, dribbled once, turned and scored.

'I think it was really lucky - you get a chance and you shoot,' Fondren said.

And there, at 2-1, is where the score stayed for the next 30 minutes. But Kincaid finally put the game out of reach with 3:01 remaining when her high shot ricocheted off the crossbar and rolled across the end line for the final margin.

'I think the stress pulls us together as a team,' Fondren said. 'We have to work together and we have to keep going hard no matter what the score is.'

'It was really exciting to have a close score in the beginning, and even though it ended with 3-1, we were still excited with the' result, Schmutzer added.

To see a complete photo gallery from this game, please go to www.milesvance.exposuremanager.com.