Freshman more than held their own in Friday night’s Cheyenne Central-Cheyenne East girls soccer match that was loaded with upperclassmen. The teams started 12 seniors or juniors as East grabbed a 3-2 overtime victory.
East freshman Morgan Burke netted the game winner in the 97th minute, classmate Katie Loken was strong defensively. On the Central side, Alexa Becerra opened the scoring and Sarah Krysl was strong defensively.
But there was one player who impressed me more than anyone — Central freshman goaltender Abby Fearneyhough.The rookie netminder finished with 10 saves. She made the routine saves look easy and made the difficult saves look … almost routine.
More than anything, though, she was fearless. Charging off her line to challenge forwards and putting her body in harm’s way to challenge for a ball in traffic.
“She was fabulous and I’m glad to have her as our goalkeeper,” Indians coach Scott Foster said. “She’s proven herself to be very solid. We have a few things that we need to work on and tighten up, but I’m proud of her and I know her teammates are proud of her.”
The noses know
As expected Friday’s match was physical and, for the most part, the referee let the teams play even though he called 28 fouls.
In my opinion, the physical play is great and refreshing. Far too often, girls athletics gets a bad rap for being soft and uncompetitive. You can’t accuse the Central and East girls of being soft.
The downside to the physical play? Injuries.
Central senior defender Abbie Nordyke was being treated for a bloodied nose after the match. Our photographer also got a photo of East senior midfielder Elsa Froelicher with a piece of gauze packed into her right nostril.
Four of the past five Central-East girls matches have gone to overtime. The teams played to two draws during the 2013 regular season before East grabbed a 2-0 win in regulation at the Class 4A East Regional tournament.
East then topped Central 2-1 in a shootout to win the 4A state title.
Friday night’s victory is East’s third consecutive in the series.