Glenbard South scored the first goal St. Francis' girls soccer team has allowed this season. It needed a second.
The defending Class 2A champion Spartans rallied for a 2-1 nonconference victory Friday night in Glen Ellyn, scoring twice in the first half, then protecting that lead throughout the second.
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The Raiders (1-5-2) stunned St. Francis in the third minute when Hailey Hawkins blocked a St. Francis clearance by goalkeeper Jenna DiTusa, controlled the ball and passed to Michaela Miglio making a hard run into the box to her left. The junior's shot hit the back of the net for a 1-0 Raiders lead.
"That was well done," Raiders coach Glen Eggert said. "It's good to be able to pick up goals now and then off of pressure alone. On the night that was the likely way we were going to get them because we weren't connecting the dots well."
"I thought they played a great first 15 minutes," Spartans coach Jim Winslow said of the Raiders. "Jenna made the mistake. I told her no big deal because I know 99 percent of the time that's never going to happen. And then we scored 10-15 minutes later and then scored again. Had we had another 5-10 minutes in the half we probably would have had another one."
"Everyone makes mistakes and we are just calm and we said we can do this," added Spartans senior Sarah Rahman. "We can get it back."
Rahman did get it back, scoring in the 19th minute, corralling a cross from Kaity Bucaro to even the score.
"I ran to go get her cross," Rahman said. "It was right spot, right time. I shot it and it went in."
St. Francis (6-0) kept the majority of possession in the Glenbard South side of the field the rest of the half but couldn't find that finishing touch again until seconds before halftime.
"If we put away, we had three, four, five sitters that if we put away, this game isn't so interesting, so to speak," Winslow said.
Again Rahman was involved. Raiders goalkeeper Dana Jourdan dove hard to her left to save Rahman's blast, but the rebound bounced right to sophomore Regan Kasprak, who shot quickly before Jourdan could react again.
"We're finally starting to play as a team. We're really fast this year, and it's an entirely new team. We're just starting to get used to each other," Rahman said.
The Raiders also saw encouraging signs.
"The girls played with a great deal of passion tonight, which is what we're working on, getting that going," Eggert said. "I'm very pleased with the level of passion they brought to the game. Some of our soccer went out the window because they were a little too amped up. They stayed in the match just on a hard work ethic, which is admirable."