By Joe Naiman
Although Ramona High School’s girls soccer team lost its Feb. 7 home game against Westview and its Feb. 9 match at Poway, both losses were by only one-goal margins.
“Both were very close games,” said Assistant Coach Rod Vandervort. “The girls played very good soccer. We’re very encouraged by the games this past week.”
The home game was played on a rainy day.
“The turf was a little slick,” Vandervort said.
That didn’t keep the teams from playing a close game. Bulldog goalkeeper Maria Solis made 12 saves, including eight in the first half. Solis also had the help of sweeper Lexi Hogan, outside defenders Emily Vandervort and Briana Gansch, stopper Bianca Scodellaro, defensive midfielder Julie Voorhes, and midfielder/defender Katie White.
“Our defense did a good job,” Vandervort said. “Even offensively we controlled the ball much better than we did in the first game against them.”
Ramona’s only goal Jan. 19 during a 6-1 loss at Westview was on a free kick. The lack of a goal Feb. 7 didn’t translate into a lack of execution by the Bulldogs.
“When we did get the ball, we did a good job of connecting short passes,” Vandervort said.
The Wolverines scored the game’s only goal about 15 minutes into the second half.
“They centered it with a nice pass,” Vandervort said. “We had our defense in pretty decent position. They just made a nice play.”
The deficit didn’t adversely affect the Bulldogs’ confidence.
“Even after they were up, we still played pretty well,” Vandervort said.
The Bulldogs overcame a Poway lead in the 2-1 game Feb. 9. The Titans scored the game’s first goal on a cross play about 18 minutes into the game. Approximately seven minutes later, Karli Njaa advanced the ball downfield before finding that Samantha Schmidt was able to take a shot from about 27 yards out.
Njaa gave Schmidt the opportunity for a goal, and Schmidt placed the ball into the top right corner of the net.
“She just nailed it,” Vandervort said.
The Titans had the second half’s only score.
“The second half we battled back and forth. Both teams had a few opportunities,” Vandervort said.
Solis made 13 saves against Poway.
The losses gave Ramona a 9-11-1 overall season record and a Palomar League figure of 0-7-1.
Thursday will be Senior Night when the Bulldogs close out their regular season at home against Torrey Pines.
The CIF playoff selection and seeding meeting will take place Saturday.