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Hurricanes Pass the Test in Season Opener

Windsor — Early-season games are always a test. On Thursday at MacLeay-Royce Field, it was as especially tough match as the Windsor High girls soccer team, which plays in Vermont Division III, was matched up with a D-II Hartford team that plays 10 Division I games. On top of that, Windsor was starting five freshmen. All of which made Windsor coach Bruce Mackay think that if his Jacks could score first it would be a big help.

As it turned out, Windsor never did score as the Hurricanes opened with a 2-0 win in the season opener for both teams.

Early in the game, Windsor’s Maryam Orogi broke off the right wing in the early going and found lots of shooting room as Hartford keeper Megan Potter, who was adventuresome all day, came out of the cage. Orogi fired, but missed just wide. She put her hands to her face to pretty much tell how she fell about the situation.

There were other occasions, particularly early in the game, when two balls bounced over the head of Potter, who was out roaming around the 18 yard-line, but they never reached the goal.

“We did have some early good looks,” Mackay said.

“I think we could have played better,” he said. “We bunched up and didn’t communicate. They were also more physical than we were today.”

Also, Windsor forward Emily Williams was out with an injury and goalkeeper Rebecca Rumrill missed the last 9:20 of the first half after colliding with Hartford’s Mariah Palmer. Maddy Morse was helped off the field with a leg injury.

The play that knocked Rumrill out of the game in the first half came during a skirmish that put Hartford ahead 1-0. Hurricane senior midfielder Palmer, who had already zinged a shot off the crossbar and boomed a rocket into the arms of Rumrill, collided with the Windsor keeper when they both were in pursuit of a rolling ball. Rumrill got the worst of the exchange, and while she was on the turf, Palmer recovered, and chased the ball down and put it into the empty cage.

Rumrill, a sophomore, had to come out of the game and was replaced by freshman Kaycee Herschel. She was tested right away as she had to spear a long hard shot and was thankful when Karla Medina’s shot from the side skidded off the crossbar.

As active as the first half was, the pace slowed considerably in the second 40 minutes. After the teams combined for 14 shots in the first half, there were only seven in the second.

But the only one that counted was the one that went in when Kayla Lancor, a sophomore midfielder, bounced a shot over Herschel as she came out and Karla Medina was there to collect the ball. She had nothing to shoot at but the net, and she didn’t miss.

Hartford co-coach Joe Denny was upbeat about the play of his Canes, but thought they could have finished better.

“We graduated some key people and we’ve got some holes to fill, but I though we did pretty well today,” Denny said. “But we do have to work on finishing better and may have to make some defensive adjustments, but overall it was a good day.”

As always, Hartford is always concerned about its schedule, as in recent years the Canes have been put in the Marble League A Division, which gives them 10 games vs. Division I teams.

“But it does do the job to get us ready for the postseason,” Denny said.

Hartford, which had a 14-5 advantage in shots on goal, is at Rutland on Saturday. Windsor goes to Stevens for a Monday night game.