BERLIN- Worcester Prep’s girls’ varsity soccer team lost its first game of the young season this week, falling to visiting St. Andrew’s, 1-0, in the waning seconds of a hard-fought game between both teams.
Both teams had great opportunities to score throughout the contest, but minute after minute clicked by with no goals on the scoreboard until St. Andrew’s finally broke through with under a minute remaining in regulation. With just 48 seconds left, St. Andrew’s crossed the ball in front of a crowded Mallard net and was able to get a shot past substitute Worcester goalkeeper Shelby Zimmer, who was outstanding all day. Zimmer, who is usually an anchor on the Worcester defense, recorded 13 saves while filling in for regular keeper Abbie Tyler.
The late goal ended a game that had been tense and well played from the outset despite the goose eggs on the board. Each team had opportunities throughout the game. For example, with just over 24 minutes left, Worcester’s Lillian DiNardo made a nice move past a St. Andrew’s defender deep in the Mallards’ offensive end and fired a shot that crossed in front of the St. Andrew’s goal and clanked off the far goal post.
At the 18:31 mark, St. Andrew’s had its best opportunity when a player got behind the Mallard defense including a charging Zimmer and dribbled a shot toward an open goal, but Worcester defender Alissa Talbert scurried back and cleared the ball before it crossed the goal line.
St. Andrew’s had another great opportunity with just over three minutes left in the contest, but Zimmer made a great save on the shot and kept the score at 0-0. Meanwhile, Worcester had several opportunities of its own late in the game. Mary Clare Regan dribbled the ball through the St. Andrew’s defense on a fast break opportunity, but the St. Andrew’s keeper came out and made a nice save.
Even after St. Andrew’s finally went ahead with just under a minute left, Worcester made a last ditch effort to tie the game. DiNardo got the ball and streaked down the left side of the field as time expired and fired a shot on goal, but the St. Andrew’s keeper corralled the shot against the near goal post and preserved the 1-0 win.
The loss was the first of the year for the Mallards and dropped their season record to 3-1. Worcester will face ESIAC rival Salisbury School on the road next Tuesday. The Mallards cruised past the Dragons, 7-0, in their first meeting of the year back on September 9.