On a beautiful night in Panther Stadium Starr's Mill came up just short in a 2-1 loss to East Coweta. The teams battled in a very even affair with each team claiming superiority at times through out the match. Ansley Peurifoy forced a great save by the Indian keeper as Quin Nowicki worked her way around the left side of the defense to lay the ball off. East Coweta got their chances as well with Spencer Dawson coming up big stonewalling an early break away by East Coweta. The teams traded shots and chances for most of the opening half with the defenses strong and the keepers making saves as needed. A hesitation in the back gave East Coweta the opener when a through ball provided the space for the Indian striker to flash in beating Dawson to the ball and finishing into the open net for the 1-0 lead in the 29th minute. The teams continued to trade blows for the remainder of the first half but the Panthers couldn't find the equalizer before halftime.
The second half saw the Indians create a bit more opportunity but the defense was equal to the task. Sara Biddle, Sky Dedrick, Ashton Nowicki and Lauren Avidano were well drilled and synchronized preventing many clear chances. When East Coweta's one clear chance came keeper Spencer Dawson came up with a huge double save to deny the Indian striker. With Panther chances few and far between, the team began to push forward with more numbers with 20 minutes remaining. Meritt Parker was instrumental in setting Peurifoy free on several occasions but Alivia Sapienza gave the team a bit more presence up top and the Panthers began to possess a bit more in the attacking half. The strategy created the chances but also stretched the team defensively and allowed East Coweta an opportunity. A ball played in behind when numbers were forward resulted in a break which was finished with a sliding touch to double the lead with just four minutes remaining. Starr's Mill did not go gently into the night however. The team pushed forward again in numbers with Sapienza running down a ball in behind to force a corner. Peurifoy took the corner with a minute remaining and it was Quin Nowicki who popped up and headed home to pull one back at 2-1. The team again pushed forward but ran out of time as the seconds ticked off and the Indians claimed a 2-1 victory.
The loss drops Starr's Mill to 6-6-1 overall on the season and 3-0-0 in the region with one game remaining prior to spring break. It is a week of Starr's Mill at McIntosh as the JV teams travel to Peachtree City on Tuesday for a double header before the varsity teams meet up at McIntosh again two days later Thursday night. The girls meet in a pivotal region match with each looking to clinch a playoff berth with a win as the boys battle for the top seeds in the region. The girls will get things started at 5:30 before the boys kick off at 8:00 pm. Come out and support your Panthers!
Starr's Mill won their third region match 3-0 over Fayette Co Tuesday night on a beautiful night that developed a dark cloud. The Panthers were quickly asserted control of the match and were winning chances after an early Tiger press in the first couple of minutes. Starr's Mill were getting looks through Ansley Peurifoy and Katelyn LaRusso as the pair held the ball up well and were penetrating consistently. Quin Nowicki, Chloe Spradlin, and Meritt Parker were working well together and keeping the pressure on when Spradlin played a beautiful ball splitting the Tiger defense. LaRusso was in like a shot alone against the keeper looking to go around her when they collided at full speed. Unfortunately both players were knocked out of the game after just 10 minutes and a penalty was awarded to the Panthers. Captain Ansley Peurifoy stepped to the spot and struck it cleanly into the back of the net for the 1-0 lead. The break in play seemed to lower the intensity of both teams for a while with Starr's Mill still keeping possession and controlling play.
After some more sustained pressure the Panthers found number two. Quin Nowicki laid a ball back to Ashton Nowicki who hit a laser into the top right corner of the goal from 25 yards to double the advantage in the 21st minute. Play continued with the occasional Tiger break and majority Panther possession throughout the half. Rachel Davison, forced into a more offensive role, kept the ball moving and combined with Makira Walton to break up opposition play. The defense allowed the team control of the ball all over the field as Sky Dedrick, Sara Biddle, Ashton Nowicki, and Lauren Avidano worked it smoothly from side to side started most attacks. The team's defense was impeccable as they closed the half without allowing a shot on goal. Spencer Dawson was always an outlet in the back but had a relaxed half. Starr's Mill continued its assault on the Tiger goal as Peurifoy was leading the line excellently. After penetrating the right flank, Peurifoy made a bee line to the goal drawing in the Tiger defense. She split the center backs with a cross to Parker at the penalty spot who took her two touches and finished into the far corner for a 3-0 lead with just 15 ticks left on the clock in the first half. That closed the first stanza with Starr's Mill holding the commanding 3-0 lead.
The second half was more of the same with a bit more life in the Fayette Co side. They created some half chances from distance that Dawson collected coolly and a couple of break aways that had to be cleaned up but the defense held the clean sheet in tack. The attack was always a threat but failed to dent the back of the net in the second half and the game finished 3-0 in the end. The win moves the Panthers to 6-5-1 on the season and 3-0-0 in the region. The team returns home Friday night as they host East Coweta at 5:55 in the first game of a varsity doubleheader. Come out and support your Panthers!
College Park, GA
Starr's Mill traveled to College Park Friday night for a varsity doubleheader at Woodward Academy and came home with a point after a 0-0 tie. Despite controlling play and maintaining an advantage most of the game the Panthers failed to dent the scoreboard. Chloe Spradlin made good use of her time in the midfield with three clear chances in the first have but was denied by the keeper on one occasion and just missed on two others. Katelyn LaRusso, Meritt Parker, Rachel Davison and Ansley Peurifoy each found opportunity but couldn't convert with the finishing touch. The team closed the half on top but even on the scoreboard at 0-0.
The second half introduced a strong wind and a stronger Woodward. Woodward were more direct and with the wind at their backs they kept the pressure on Starr's Mill for much of the opening minutes. Ashton Nowicki, Lauren Avidano, Sky Dedrick and Sara Biddle were more than up to the task as they limited the opposition's chances to crosses and long shots which only called on keeper Spencer Dawson once to make a save. Slowly the Panthers began to get more a hold of the game with Rachel Davison, Makira Walton, and Quin Nowicki providing options for the team. Spradlin continued her fine form in the attacking end with Parker also keeping options open. Parker found LaRusso with a great cross which she finished coolly before the flag went up to deny the advantage. Alivia Sapienza came on and provided pace and directness latching onto two through balls but hitting one just wide with another saved by the keeper. The final seconds ticked off as Starr's Mill defended one more Woodward advance and the honors were even at 0-0.
The tie leaves Starr's Mill level on the season at 5-5-1 overall and 2-0-0 in the region sitting in 4th place. The team recorded its 5th shutout in 7 matches with Dawson going the distance and the defense allowing only three shots. The Panthers travel to Fayetteville on Tuesday to take on the currently third seeded Fayette Co Tigers who have already clinched a spot in the 2017 5A state playoffs. The teams open a varsity doubleheader at 5:30 with the boys to follow at 7:30. Come out and support your Panthers!
Starr's Mill evened their overall record at 5-5-0 and moved to 2-0-0 in the region with a 14-0 win over Riverdale in chilly conditions Tuesday night. Meritt Parker set the pace with 3 goals and an assist to lead the deluge of goals. Katelyn LaRusso scored 3 goals, Rachel Davison 2 goals 1 assist, Ansley Peurifoy 2 goals, Makira Walton 1 goal 1 assist, Quin Nowicki 1 goal 1 assist, Sara Biddle 1 goal 1 assist, Sky Dedrick 1 goal, and Chloe Spradlin 1 assist. The team travels to College Park on Friday evening for the opener of a varsity doubleheader against Woodward Academy. Come out and support your Panthers!
Starr's Mill hosted Columbus on Youth Night Friday evening dropping the encounter 2-1. The team started slowly and had a hard time getting the ball out of their end as the Blue Devils dominated possession and stayed on the front foot throughout. Columbus had a shot on goal within the first 90 seconds as they penetrated their right side early and often. The Panthers adjusted their positioning and tightened up limiting the Blue Devils to half chances and corners after an initial free for all. The team worked hard defensively and denied penetration with a tight shape helping to eliminate clear chances although still struggling to hold the ball. A corner in the 19th minute proved the team's undoing as Columbus kept the ball in the box for an extended period before pouncing on a loose ball and taking the 1-0 lead. Keeper Spencer Dawson got a hand to the shot but couldn't keep it out. Starr's Mill closed the door on any other shots for the half but still struggled to hold the ball entering the half down a goal.
The second half started with a bit more attacking presence for the Panthers as they managed to start putting some passes together and create a couple chances. Starr's Mill began to get numbers forward with the improved possession and were getting in behind with more regularity as the game became a more wide open affair. It was Columbus who took advantage however as they broke up a Panther counter and immediately launched one of their own down their favored right side. The Panthers were caught with a high line, scattered defenders and couldn't get the tackle to break the run up as the Blue Devil right mid flew down the flank, into the box, and hit a laser into the bottom left corner to double the lead. The team's response was perfect as instead of deflating the Panthers upped the tempo. They began to create chances and get in behind consistently and started to hold the lion's share of possession. Rachel Davison proved pivotal in the midfield as Katelyn LaRusso and Ansley Peurifoy coverage acres of space in running balls down and holding up play to let numbers join. Lauren Avidano made her first appearance of the year and provided the team a boost in the back with Ashton Nowicki dominating the air and controlling the backline. Sara Biddle defended the flank denying time and space to Columbus' best player.
Starr's Mill pulled one back from a throw in with about 10 minutes remaining. Peurifoy threw in to LaRusso who dropped it right back. Peurifoy's attempted cross deflected off a defender falling to Davison who took it out of the air in one, took another touch away from pressure, got her head up and found Sky Dedrick outside the box. Dedrick took a touch to settle and drilled the ball over the keeper, through her hands, and under the bar. The team was playing with purpose now and could see a second. Quin Nowicki sliced the Blue Devil backline open with a run down the left flank beating two players and splitting two more with a pass to find LaRusso whose shot was saved. A Peurifoy corner found Ashton Nowicki at the back post who headed it back to the penalty spot but LaRusso's falling volley was over. Another Peurifoy corner found LaRusso, who turned quickly and poked home a ball just wide. The Blue Devils could not get out of their end or possess the ball but had the clock on their side as the seconds ticked off to end the match at 2-1 in their favor.
Starr's Mill falls to 4-5-0 on the season with a 1-0-0 region record as their murder's row of non-region competition continued. The team hosts region foe Riverdale on Tuesday, March 14th, at 5:55 in Panther Stadium in the opener of a varsity double header. Come out and support your Panthers!
The Panthers journeyed to Newnan Friday night for their third game in five day and came home with a 1-0 win over the Cougars after overtime. The match was a very even midfield battle for most of the evening with neither team able to carve out too many clear cut chances as defense reigned supreme. The first half was relatively uneventful with Newnan holding a bit better of the play and a more consistent presence in the Panther end. However it was Starr's Mill who hit the cross bar as Makira Walton fired home from distance with Sky Dedrick's follow up header also hitting the bar. Keeper Spencer Dawson wasn't called on much but recorded the team's third shutout in four games making 2 saves in the first half, cutting out numerous through balls and helping the team hold a possession advantage. The game entered the half even at zero.
In the second half, the Panthers asserted themselves a bit more with a territorial advantage to match their possession. Quin Nowicki got on the ball more with space and lanes opened up as the team at times began to pull apart the Cougar backline. Ansley Peurifoy hit a 20 yard free kick hard and low which Nowicki got a touch sending the ball into the bottom left corner before the keeper's quick foot save kept the game even. Katelyn LaRusso sprung Peurifoy again with a line splitting through ball but the keeper again came up with a big save diving to her left to prevent the far post shot from hitting the net. Sara Biddle, Ashton Nowicki, Rachel Davison, and Chloe Spradlin were a well oiled machine denying Newnan any clear looks at goal despite facing eight second half corner kicks. Alivia Sapienza, Nicki Jackson, and Katelyn O'Shields each came in with big minutes as the Panthers needed fresh legs to see out the half in the second of back to back games. The game ended 0-0 as overtime loomed for both teams.
The first overtime was a quick reflection of the match with Newnan coming flying out of the gates but unable to turn their pressure into a clear chance. Starr's Mill weathered the storm and took hold of the game as the five minutes ran down. Applying pressure of their own in the Cougar box, Quin Nowicki had an attempted shot headed clear before Meritt Parker fired a one touch volley over the keeper from just inside the box and into the far left top corner to give Starr's Mill the 1-0 lead with 78 seconds left in the first overtime period. The goal energized the Panthers who moved forward with a calm confidence to see out the first period. In the second period it was all Panthers as Starr's Mill drove deep into the final third and simply kept the ball. Any Cougar clearances were blunted before reaching the Panther defensive half and Starr's Mill closed the game out expertly for the 1-0 win.
Starr's Mill evens their record at 4-4-0 on the season and 1-0-0 in region play. The team travels to Suwanee to face Peachtree Ridge Tuesday in the opener of a varsity doubleheader at 5:30 pm. Come out and support your Panthers!
Starr's Mill started off region action on the right foot with a convincing 10-0 win over Griffin Thursday night. The action started immediately as Ansley Peurifoy was first on the board just 66 seconds into the match. Quin Nowicki was next in the 3rd minute before assisting Katelyn LaRusso on the third in the 6th minute. A possession oriented attack continued as Peurifoy added a second assisted by Chloe Spradlin before assisting both Ashton Nowicki and Meritt Parker to put the Panthers up 6-0. Quin Nowicki got her second off the foot of Spencer Dawson, Alivia Sapienza was set up by LaRusso, LaRusso was assisted by Parker, and Quin Nowicki claimed her hat trick to finish off the match. Dawson and Abby Weaver combined on the team's second shutout of the season.
The win pushes Starr's Mill to 1-0-0 in the region and 3-4-0 overall this season. There is no rest of the weary as the Panthers travel to Newnan tomorrow night for a JV / Varsity doubleheader against the Cougars in their third road trip this week. The JV kicks it off at 5:00 with the varsity to follow at 6:30. Come out and support your Panthers!
Starr's Mill was delayed in getting to Roswell and left something on the bus as the team dropped a 4-0 result to Blessed Trinity. The Panthers start did not reveal the final result as the team went back and forth with the Titans for the first 20 minutes. Ansley Peurifoy, Katelyn LaRusso and Alivia Sapienza each had a shot on goal before Blessed Trinity opened the scoring 1-0 in the 18th minute. Starr's Mill response was strong and the team created another shot on frame but the Titans scored a second on their third shot of the game and their was a noticeable drop in tempo at 2-0. The rest of the match saw a one sided affair with the Titans always a threat and the Panthers struggling to possess the ball.
The halftime break brought little relief as the Titans scored their third just minutes into the second half. A fourth seemed to be in the cards but a whistle denied a goal on an offsides call. The pressure continued however and Blessed Trinity netted their fourth from a corner. Starr's Mill began to limit the oppositions chances but could not mount an attack falling 4-0 at the final whistle.
The loss drops the team to 2-4-0 on the young season and snaps Starr's Mill's two game winning streak. The Panthers finally venture into Region action on Thursday as they travel to Griffin for the 7:30 night cap of a varsity double header. Come out and support your Panthers!
Starr's Mill clawed their way to a 1-0 win over Lovett on Friday evening in Panther Stadium. Ansley Peurifoy got the game winner in the 20th minute when a Katelyn LaRusso clearance got behind the Lovett backline and Peurifoy raced onto the ball. A couple of calm touches set her up to finish expertly and give Starr's Mill the 1-0 lead. The game had been an even affair up to that point with each team having a couple of chances. Neither was able to hit the target until the game winner however and, from that point, the complexion of the game changed. The Panthers defended resolutely and possessed well but didn't create many clear cut chances. Lovett began to exert more and more pressure with several chances as time went on. However keeper Spencer Dawson was quick off her line to claim any half chance and Rachel Davison again marshaled her backline extremely well. Sky Dedrick and Sara Biddle were resolute on the flanks and pushed to support the attack in possession as well. Newly promoted Hailey Grebeck has been incredible in helping create a very formidable back line as the team claimed its first clean sheet of the season.
After the half, the game tilted more in Lovett's favor. A couple of clear 1v1s against Dawson ended with shots off target however and the defense limited any more dangerous attacks. Chloe Spradlin came in and helped provide a calm assurance when pressure was at its highest helping the Panthers to carve out some nice possession. The midfield worked extremely hard as Katelyn O'Shields, Katelyn LaRusso, Makira Walton, and Meritt Parker put in a huge amount of work defensively and in possession. Quin Nowicki came on to add a calmness on the ball as well to go with an incredibly high work rate by all those in the middle. No one personified that level of commitment more than LaRusso who almost created a goal from sheer determination. She chased down a ball back to the keeper and blocked the attempted clearance. She kept her feet and chased the ball down attempting to slide it into the goal only for a Lovett defender to clear it out for a corner at the last second.
The defensive effort began up front all evening as Peurifoy, LaRusso, and Alivia Sapienza threatened the backline in behind, pressured their backs, and dropped into midfield to help possess and defend. Starr's Mill showed a spirit and resolve in holding onto their shutout and claiming the narrow win. The victory completed an undefeated week and raised the team's record to 2-3-0 on the season. The team has the weekend off before it travels to Roswell on Monday for the opener of a varsity doubleheader against Blessed Trinity at 5:30 pm. Come out and support your Panthers!
Starr's Mill picked itself up off the floor and fought hard for a 2-1 win over Carrollton Monday night in Panther Stadium. The Panthers showed composure as they controlled possession and held a territorial advantage from the first whistle. Katelyn O'Shields and Hailey Grebeck showed great poise in stepping up from the JV in their first varsity starts and settled quickly into the match. Katelyn LaRusso was everywhere from her center mid spot winning balls and cycling the team's possession left and right. Rachel Davison again ran her backline superbly to close down any threats and keep possession through switching the field. The team didn't create many clear cut chances but managed to control tempo and opportunity through out the half. The break through came down the left flank as Sky Dedrick got around the end and served a low cross into the box which Ansley Peurifoy got her toe to when she poked it home the opener for the 1-0 lead in the 17th minute. Nicki Jackson and Heart Williams provided support up top and on the flank to keep Starr's Mill in the ascendancy and on their front foot. The pattern continued with the Trojans trying to break clear but the backline holding firm and Starr's Mill entering the half up 1-0.
The Panthers jumped out quick to start the second half. An attack down the right side saw LaRusso combine with Meritt Parker to get through clean as LaRusso slotted home to double the lead just two minutes into the second stanza. Starr's Mill continued to control the match as the team formed a cohesive unit in possession and made life difficult on Carrollton in attack. The team seemed to be cruising and closing in on a third until the Trojans pulled one back in the 66th minute. A long hopeful ball high into the air towards goal proved problematic and fall under the crossbar for the 2-1 scoreline. The goal emboldened Carrollton and caused a momentary crisis of confidence for the Panthers. However Starr's Mill regrouped and finished out the match without allowing another shot.
The win moves the Panthers to 1-3-0 on the season with a visit from Lovett coming on Friday in Panther Stadium. The match kicks off at 7:30 pm after the varsity boys host Marist at 5:30 pm. Come out and support your Panthers!