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updated: 3/25/2014 9:17 PM

Grayslake Central heating up in a hurry

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  • Grant's Nina Deligio (4) chases down the loose ball with Grayslake Central's Carson Sparkman during Tuesday's soccer game in Grayslake.

       Grant's Nina Deligio (4) chases down the loose ball with Grayslake Central's Carson Sparkman during Tuesday's soccer game in Grayslake.
    Paul Valade | Staff Photographer

  • Grant's Jenna Pecorini (13) gets the upper hand on Grayslake Central's Karleen Gomez during Tuesday's soccer game in Grayslake.

       Grant's Jenna Pecorini (13) gets the upper hand on Grayslake Central's Karleen Gomez during Tuesday's soccer game in Grayslake.
    Paul Valade | Staff Photographer

  • Grayslake Central's Joslynn Smith (16) controls the ball under pressure from Grant's Julie Peterson on Tuesday in Grayslake.

       Grayslake Central's Joslynn Smith (16) controls the ball under pressure from Grant's Julie Peterson on Tuesday in Grayslake.
    Paul Valade | Staff Photographer

 
By Rusty Silber

The weather was a bit chilly for Grayslake Central's girls soccer team, but the Rams finished their tournament feeling warm and fuzzy.

Emily Werfel scored the game's only goal, as Grayslake Central edged Grant 1-0 Tuesday for its second win of the day. The defense also came up big for the Rams in their sixth annual tournament, which had each of the four teams play three games in two days.

"We knew that it would be tough competition (in the tournament)," Grayslake Central coach Bethany Russ said. "Grant has a good program. The weather conditions were equal for both teams. We just came out here and knew we had to play our game."

In her first season, after Mike McCaulou went to Vernon Hills, Russ has seen a lot of good things. After losing their season opener, the Rams won all three of their games in their tourney.

"I'm more happy that the girls are understanding the system that we're working with right now," Russ said. "The first game (against Lakes) was confusing. They're coachable and we can work together. It was nice to have these three games. We knew what we needed to work on from the first game of the season."

The Rams outscored their three opponents 10-0.

On Tuesday, Werfel scored off a pass from Karleen Gomez in the 19th minute. Werfel was standing at the top of the box when Gomez played the ball to her right. Werfel finished for her sixth goal in four games.

"Playing center midfield gives me a lot of opportunities to cut back and (take) the outside shots," Werfel said.

Rams keeper Rachel Effa (4 saves) earned her third straight shutout. She had plenty of help from defenders Lauren Spalding, Anna Sizelove, Aly Hamrick, Carson Sparkman and Lura Quandt.

"Our defense has really stepped up (replacing) the graduated seniors," Effa said. "They're very vocal move when they need to shift. It makes my job easier."

Grant (2-1) had a couple of chances to net the equalizer in the final minutes.

"It was a great experience, especially for our young girls," Grant coach Michael Kennedy said. "We had a chance to get out and battle against a quality team like Grayslake Central. It was good to see the composure and see how the freshmen could do. It will be fun to work with them."

Grayslake Central beat Waukegan 3-0 earlier in the day. Werfel, Joslynn Smith and Quin Garbett each scored goals.

Grant won its other game by a 3-0 final over Round Lake. Danielle Frazer found the back of the net twice, while Marissa Allen scored her fifth goal in three games. Ana Rodas earned the shutout, making 2 saves.

Round Lake went 1-2 in the tournament.

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