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updated: 3/25/2014 10:44 PM

St. Charles N. beats cold, Neuqua

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By Chris Walker
Daily Herald Correspondent

Cold weather and wet fields forced countless cancellations on Tuesday.

It also resulted in a night that Lauren Macchia will never forget.

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Macchia scored her first goal midway through the second half to lift St. Charles North to a 1-0 victory over Neuqua Valley.

The game, which was originally scheduled to be played on Neuqua Valley's grass field at 4:30 p.m., was moved to Metea Valley's turf surface with a start time of 6:30 p.m.

"It was brutally cold out there," Macchia said. "Numb."

Macchia wasn't complaining about the numbness, though, thanks to her quick reaction time in netting the game-winner on a rebound with 20:10 remaining.

"I saw an opportunity and we wanted to take every opportunity to finish," she said. "I took what I could get and it felt good."

Macchia's well-versed with the success of the North Stars. She saw it while playing on the JV squad the last couple years, so for her to be able to contribute in a big way was a special moment.

"Our team's hard work obviously showed really well," she said. "We wanted to finish off the goal and a win for the team."

Neuqua Valley (0-2-0) did a good job of moving the ball throughout the game, but all it took was one sequence to deny them their first victory of the spring, or at the very least, a draw.

"I thought we played very well, but we were going lateral too much and at some point you need to go and attack," Wildcats coach Joe Moreau said. "I thought we possessed the ball 80 percent of the time, but we only got off two or three shots, and you're not going to score many goals if you don't shoot."

With the temperature in the mid-20s and a strong wind, the conditions certainly were less than ideal.

"The elements are what they are and we need to overcome that," North Stars coach Ruth Vostal said. "We work a lot on that in practice making situations difficult for us physically and mentally."

St. Charles North (1-1-0) noted improvements on defense from its season-opening loss to Conant.

"Anyone who has seen both games has seen our defense has improved," Vostal said. "We haven't had much time to get out and work on our offense, but we'll get out and continue to grow."

Similarly, the Wildcats are slowly trying to piece together a mix of talented players with a roster that features a half-dozen freshmen.

"We have some young kids still getting used to playing with each other," Moreau said. "We showed we could keep the ball, but we have to learn to attack the goal."

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