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SM 4-0 Whitewater

posted Mar 8, 2019, 6:20 PM by John Bowen
March 8th
Fayetteville, GA

Starr's Mill defeated region rival Whitewater 4-0 on Friday evening in Panther Stadium. The game was a bit of a midfield slugfest for a good portion of the first half with each side mired down in the middle third of the field. Whitewater looked to counter quickly with quick drops and ball through while Starr's Mill showed a more patient build up through the backs and midfield. As time wore on the Panthers began to find their feet a bit quicker and hold the ball for longer and longer periods. The midfield played pivot for the Panther action with Sofia Varmeziar, Darby Olive, and Kayla Murray keeping the ball moving quickly through the middle.Sara Evans made her presence felt with a run around the right end of the Wildcat backline before finding Quin Nowicki in front of goal. Nowicki was quick to finish past the keeper in the 22nd minute to put Starr's Mill up 1-0. The combination caused problems for Whitewater throughout the first half with Nowicki hitting the post twice more from Evans passes but the net did not bulge and the Panthers led 1-0 at the break. 

Starr's Mill started moving the ball quicker and began causing more problems in the second half. Sophia Bernardi was playing a larger and larger role  in attack both holding the ball up and make runs in behind. Chloe Spradlin, Nowicki, and Kara Dial each found success in the final third creating chances and getting on the end of them. Bernardi took over in the 50th minute when she was played through by Olive sending the defender the wrong direction twice before slamming the ball home for the 2-0 lead. Just two minutes later the combination paid off again with Olive once again finding Bernardi and the score was 3-0 before the Wildcats could regroup. Spradlin was played down the right side on a quick switch of play but her shot was blocked into Evans path and she applied the finishing touch for the 4-0 lead. The defense was cleaning up loose balls and defended well as a group with Kaleigh Ward, Rachel Davison, Mary Jane Gagliano, Spradlin and Julia Shanahan corralling any danger Whitewater could muster. Jacqueline Reardon preserved the shutout at full stretch to tip over a long blast for a corner which was subsequently cleared away. 

The win raises the Panthers record to 7-2-0 on the season and 2-0-0 in the region. The team is back on the field Tuesday night in another region encounter in a varsity doubleheader against Jonesboro for Senior Night. Come out and support your Panthers!
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