Junior Courtney Corrado is no stranger to long-range shots, and in short order, Vernon Hills' foes are finding out.
For the second time in five games, Corrado sent a 35-yard kick that found the back of the net. Her long-range blast helped lift Vernon Hills past visiting Grayslake North 3-0 in a nonconference girls soccer match in Vernon Hills on Wednesday.
Corrado seemingly has been able to score goals at will from these extreme distances. She says she's had 10 of them since her freshman year.
Her shot Wednesday was a free kick from right in front of the Cougars' bench that cut through the wind and entered under the crossbar into the far upper corner in the 65th minute.
"When I overthink it is when I mess up on it," said Corrado. "I just take a deep breath and let my mind go blank. Then I just go and hit it.
"Right before, coach (Vince) DeLuca screamed out, 'Corrado upper-90.' Over time, it has gotten easier and I've been able to get better at it. I still work on it a lot in practice."
The Cougars (1-3-1) picked up their first victory of the season. Their other goals came from Kimberly Amari in the 14th minute and from Kristen Guglielmi off an assist by Amy Andrea in the 58th minute.
"This group is starting to come together and we're starting to get our legs a little bit," said DeLuca, whose team played to a 2-2 tie with Glenbrook North on Monday. "They're a nice group to coach and they work hard out there."
Grayslake North (1-1) suffered its first loss of the season after a season-opening victory over Round Lake on Tuesday. Playing their first game of the season on grass posed some challenges for the Knights.
"We were real hesitant and we allowed (Vernon Hills) to dictate everything," Grayslake North coach Adam DeCaluwe said. "It's a young group and they're getting used to each other."