Barrington opened pool play on its own tournament in style on Thursday.
The Fillies notched a 4-1 victory over St. Viator in the wind and rain on the turf of Barrington Community Field.
The first day of play in the Mairin Wallner Memorial Tournament, which is part of the annual Naperville Invite, saw the Fillies (7-1-2) score first in the 11th minute before finding a higher gear after intermission to secure a comfortable win.
"We've now seen both Buffalo Grove and Barrington, and I cannot imagine too many other clubs in the state that are better than those two," said St. Viator coach Mike Taylor, whose team faces Evanston at noon Saturday as tourney play continues. "They have incredible speed and terrific talent all over their roster, and I think we came out and played scared in that first half. But we settled down and play with a little more confidence in the second half, which I was hoping to see from them tonight."
The hosts got off to the start they had hoped for when Elli Ackermann ran onto a wonderful serve from Jenna Szczesny after teammate Kelsey Muniz initiated the opening goal with a well paced early ball down the left side to Szczesny.
While St. Viator (6-3-0) seemed hesitant, Barrington created several quality opportunities, which, if not for some bravery from keeper Sabina Raslawski and the Fillies' own struggles with finishing, could have seen the advantage at the break much higher than the 1-0 on the scoreboard.
"I liked the fact that we created chances, but not with how many we failed to put into the back of the net," said Barrington coach Ryan Stengren.
The Lions' best chance of the first period came when Megan McCollum sent a looping serve into the box at 36 minutes from the left side, forcing keeper Hannah Luedtke to fight off a driving rain and sideways wind to pull the ball out of the dark of the night.
Just seven minutes into the second period, Nicole Niro redirected her header past Raslawski from another Szczesny helper, before Annalise Avers made it 3-0 in the 57th minute when she blasted a Mia Calamari corner off the post and in.
"I thought we came out really strong tonight, which was important after having an easy win over Wheeling followed by a long layoff before tonight's game," said Calamari, who delivered several well struck corners.
Lauren Kohn pulled one back for St. Viator when she drove her close range shot through a crowd after an Emma Henry corner at 60 minutes. But Barrington freshman Maesyn Poidomani responded to the Lions' lone goal when she cut the ball into the area, then fired a low drive just inside the post six minutes from time.
"We've got to get better on our set-piece chances, but overall, I liked the way we played at times, and the fact that we were able to get plenty of minutes for everyone here tonight while getting the result we were after," said Stengren.
Next up for the Fillies in the tournament is a 7 p.m. Friday contest against Evanston.