October 17, 2017
By: Erica Rose
The Colonial League girl’s soccer semi-finals were held last night and what great games they were. Palisades upset Saucon Valley in the first matchup of the night 2-1. Southern Lehigh, the number 4 seed, who needed to win a play-in game just to get here, then pulled off the upset over the favorite Northwestern.
It was an evenly matched game, which saw Northwestern controlling the possession especially in the first half. But, I was so impressed with Southern Lehigh’s defense. The girls hardly allowed a shot the entire game. The Spartans are one of the only teams who play 3 back, and they have all the confidence in the world in them. It’s the offense that has struggled all year (if you remember my blog earlier this season when the Spartans dominated play over Saucon Valley but settled for the tie.) Back to this game though – I wouldn’t say it was the offense tonight that lacked production, I would say it was Northwestern’s defense that made it difficult to get the shots and when the Spartans finally did create their opportunity they made it count. It really was the perfect scenario, which started with the defense forcing the Tigers to turn the ball over. In fact, it was a perfect pass to freshman Kaya Mobley (too bad she was on the other team) who then fed Kristen Cocozza who was able to take her defender as well as the goalie so far to the right side, that she had a wide open net. Head coach Andrew Filler called her one of the best, if not the best player in the Colonial League. Northwestern had a few shots to make it interesting late in the game, but the Spartans were able to keep them off the board, and will now play for the chance to defend their title.
The Spartans will face Palisades in the Colonial League Championship game on Thursday (the site and time are still TBD) but it should be another great game. The team was disappointed with their effort the first time they played the Pirates. They ended up falling 2-0, but the Spartans are a different team then earlier this season, they are clicking at the right time and they are comfortable playing with each other. If they come out strong on Thursday, I’d put my money on the Spartans.
Good luck to both teams!