According to an essay I teach in our AP English Language course, “There are moments in sport…during which something so overpowering happens that it wells up before you as a palpable presence and carries you along on a powerful wave.” In sight of Lake Winnipesaukee at Brewster on Wednesday, the Girls’ JV Soccer team felt that presence and rode that wave.
These were two well-matched teams, having tied early in the season and then Proctor’s having beaten Brewster at our house. On the shore of the Big Lake, with the wind coming across the Belknaps, I had not arrived expecting to win at their place. A tie, maybe. Indeed, for much of this game, the teams were knotted. Brewster jumped out early, at minute 6:40, from the middle on the ground with a goal. At minute 34, Olivia Ames, on an assist from Emma Harrell, tied the game as we headed into a 5-minute halftime. The teams remained tied up at 1-1 for another 25 minutes into the second half, when Olivia again found the goal, this time from the left. Brewster answered 55 seconds later, and at 2-2 it looked like the tie was inevitable. There’s something powerful, though, in all that knocking around in front of an opponent’s goal, looking to complete passes and open up space. Such a transcendent moment happened with less than two minutes remaining – on a beautifully set play, Lily Krehbiel fed a glorious pass to Bella Eaton, who turned and fired. If this had to be Bella’s moment to bow out after four years culminating in a spirited captaincy, this would be it – she rode the wave. The team held on, buoyed by this powerful spirit, and we retired from the field with the win, 3-2.
Kudos to Nora Headley in goal, whose 11 saves made all the difference. Kudos to those who shut down aggressive play in the middle by #11 – Paige, Lily, and Morgan all come to mind, sporting bruises. Characteristic hustle from Delaney and Cade kept balls cleared from out in front. Katy, Emma, Lily, and Anna all made powerful runs, covering the field and particularly excelling on offense. The works of the captains – Bella, Olivia, and Kat Rice – spoke for themselves. Now it’s off to Holderness for the final match of the season, seeking to flatten the Bulls in their ring. The game kicks off on the grass just off I-93 at 2:00 in Holderness.