Girls Varsity Soccer
Game Summaries & Headlines.
GIRLS PREP SOCCER: Redbirds pull away from Mater Dei on Senior Night
Pete Hayes, firstname.lastname@example.org
Pete Hayes | The Telegraph
Megan Zini of Alton (2) assisted teammate Morgan Rauscher on Alton’s first goal of Tuesday’s 3-0 Senior Night win over Breese Mater Dei at AHS. She is shown in previous action.
GODFREY — Consistency, consistency, consistency.
Following Tuesday’s 3-0 Senior Night victory over Breese Mater Dei, Alton girls soccer coach Gwen Sabo would love to see more of it from her team.
The Redbirds led Mater Dei just 1-0 at halftime when Sabo voiced her concerns to her players.
“We played just OK in the first half, but as good as we can,” Sabo said. “At half, I told them that we need to be consistent no matter who we’re playing. The other teams will do what they will. But we need to perform at the same level, no matter what.
“That’s what makes the difference between average teams and teams that can make a run in the playoffs.”
With the postseason looming just over the horizon, the Redbirds are 11-7 following Tuesday’s victory at Piasa Motor Fuels Field. Mater Dei is 8-10-1.
AHS honored six seniors at the game, including Alaina Nasello, Megan Zini, Calista Cox, Megan Rauscher, Summer Schleeper and Grace Kane. The six began their prep careers under former coach Jeff Hayes, who resigned during the off season to spend more time with his family. He was replaced this season by Sabo, a former Alton standout who had been an assistant last season at Marquette Catholic.
“These seniors have meant a lot to our program,” Sabo said. “I was glad we were able to get the win on Senior Night.
“Senior Night can be tricky and I understand now why some coaches aren’t big fans of Senior Nights. Some of the girls were emotional and not everybody is focused in on the game at hand. It can take a while to get things back on track.”
A pair of seniors, Rauscher and Zini, combined for Alton’s first goal, although it didn’t take lace until nearly halftime. Rauscher scored from an assist by fellow-senior Alaina Nasello in the 33rd minute.
“It was good to be ahead,” Sabo said, “but our girls were forcing it too much. They all wanted to score goals and they wanted to do it all at once. It took a while for them to settle down.
“After halftime, I though they played a lot cleaner.”
In the second half, the Redbirds’ Grace Kane doubled the lead when she scored off an assist from Sydney Brunaugh.
Tori Schrimpf capped the scoring on a free kick goal from about 35 yards out in the 69th minute.
With the Redbirds controlling play at midfield, Alton notched its 10th shutout of the season. Alton goalie Addison Miller made three saves.
“It was a physical game,” Sabo said. “I thought Mater Dei did a good job. They did what they had to do to try and even things up. The key was how we reacted and eventually, we did a good job.”
Alton will stay outside the Southwestern Conference Tuesday with a game at Columbia.