By STEVE JACKSON
The Lennard High School Lady Longhorns started the new soccer season Nov. 12 with a stampede — an 8-2 win in a non-conference game at Hillsborough High School. This was a great team effort where the Lady Longhorn starters led 4-0 at the half. The Hillsborough Terriers fought back to score 2 in the second half as Lennard made some substitutions. The Lady Longhorns’ 5 scorers were not letting this game get away, led by the player of the game #13 Aniah Rasool (senior), who put in 4 goals. Four other Lady Longhorns also got the ball in the net. They were #3 Sadie Vitale (senior), #19 Jocelyn Diaz (senior), #8 Katie Matson (freshman) and #20 Gemma Ramos-Galarza (senior). It was a great team effort on both sides of the ball.
Vitale took the bull by the horns with a 4-goal effort on Nov. 15 to lead the Lady Longhorns to a 5-1 win over non-conference Alonso High School Ravens. Lennard controlled the ball for most of the first half with the Ravens having very few opportunities to threaten. After the continual pressure on the Ravens’ goal, the Longhorns were up 2-0 with minutes in the half. On the one team miscue of the night, the Ravens scored a goal off a freekick because of a foul.
Player of the game Sadie Vitale took back the momentum with a quick score in the early minutes of the second half. From there Lennard wore down an equally matched opponent, with 2 more goals by Vitale and one by #4 Katie Rocha (sophomore). The defensive player of the game was the back four: #13 Anaih Rasool (senior), #21 Kaitlyn Tyler (junior), #11 Rita Paulieuhenha (senior) and #2 Madison Bennett (junior). The back four fended off any counterattacks and on the few times the Ravens broke through, these players quickly recovered to break up the play.
The Lady Longhorns took another strong team effort into their next game, their first conference game, Nov. 19, against the Durant High School Cougars. This year’s re-districting placed the Longhorns in a tougher district. Durant is fresh off a 0-0 tie with Lennard’s prior district’s perennial winner, Bloomingdale High School. This promises to be the Lady Longhorns toughest test yet. (The score was not available for print before press time).
Girls Soccer media manager Al Lopez contributed to this article.