BENTON TOWNSHIP — Bridgman’s girls soccer team bounced back from an early Lake Michigan Catholic goal in a May 1 Berrien- Cass-St. Joseph Conference matchup.
After allowing an early goal, the Bees scored four unanswered before giving up a late own-goal to win 4-2 over Catholic.
The game, origianlly scheduled to be played at Bridgman, was played at Catholic’s field after wet weather over the last few days left the playing surface in poor condition.
Catholic (5-1 BCS, 8-1) went up 1-0 just 2:44 into the game after Kathleen Krieger found the net on an assist from Hattie Latham.
Bridgman (6-1in the BCS following a 5-2 win over Comstock on May 6) generated multiple scoring opportunities following Krieger’s goal, pushing the ball upfield on deep passes until finally breaking through in the 26th minute.
Savanna Tate found the net for Bridgman at 25:25, and did so again just over two minutes later to put the Bees on top 2-1. Both of Tate’s first-half goals were unassisted.
Bridgman coach Nick Foxworthy said the Bees saw a weakness in the Lakers’ defense midway through the first half and attacked.
“They played a real flat line that we were able to find some gaps in,” said Foxworthy. “We played the ball up and made some good runs to it, and we were able to finish our chances today.”
Bridgman took its 2-1 lead into the half before Olivia Tomlin added a goal for the Bees at 42:57 after fielding a bouncing ball and finding an open path to the net.
Tate added her third goal, again unassisted, at 54:06 on another breakaway opportunity.
Foxworthy said Tate’s offensive production has continued to increase throughout the season.
“She started the year as a midfielder and we moved her up to provide us with some more punch up front,” he said of Tate. “She’s doing well for us.”
Catholic was playing without two of its starting defensive players in Adriana Nerio and Claire Duris. Duris has been battling injury, and Nerio had a prior commitment and was unable to play in Wednesday’s contest.
“We’re actually missing quite a few players today, so defensively we’re missing two starters,” Catholic coach Jayme Cox said. “That kind of changed the dynamics of that with having to move a few players to different positions.
“That changed a little bit of our attack, but we’ve just got to do the best we can with what players we have available.” Catholic was not short on scoring chances, as it out-shot Bridgman 11-9 and had five corner kicks compared to just one for Bridgman.
Bees keeper Morgan Granzow made some key saves in net, tallying ten for the match. Catholic keeper Sarah Milanowski made five saves for the Lakers.
The loss was the first of the season for Catholic.
For Bridgman, the win helped even the standings in the BCS as conference play continues.
“Today I think we played really good team defense, staying behind the ball and marking up,” said Foxworthy.
Scoring goals in the May 6 home-field victory over Comstock were Tate (2), Emily Dinges, Olivia Tomlin and Lily Badger. Tate was credited with two assists.