Bulldogs beat Hubbard
Lakeview gets further in tournament this season
CORTLAND — The Lakeview girls soccer team was eliminated a year ago in the Division II district semifinal. The Bulldogs cleared that hurdle this time around with a 4-1 victory over Hubbard on Monday night at Don Richards Memorial Stadium and set up a rematch with the team that knocked them out of the tournament a season ago.
Lakeview (13-3-1), seeded first in the Austintown district, will play second-seeded Howland in the district championship match at Niles’ Bo Rein Stadium at 7 p.m. Thursday night.
“I think we’re looking forward to (playing Howland),” Lakeview coach Shawn Varley said. “In the regular season, we beat (Howland) for the first time — 3-0 at their place — since I’ve been coach here. I think playing on turf at a neutral site, it will be an incredible game.”
The Bulldogs struggled through the first half against the Eagles (9-6-4), but managed to lead, 2-0, at the intermission.
“I think the first half, we came out and played the same style Hubbard was,” Varley said. “We were bypassing the midfield and trying to hit a target player. It wasn’t working even though we got some opportunities. We had to get back to our core style of play, use the midfielders, be patient, change the point of attack and then go forward. We have five midfielders out there, so kicking it over their heads doesn’t make sense.”
Rachel Braunegg tallied first for Lakeview with a shot from about 25 yards out to put the Bulldogs up, 1-0, with 28:45 to play in the first half. The score puts her within a goal of tying the school record of 137 for her career.
“I usually never shoot from that far out,” Braunegg said. “I was running out and there was a defender on my right side. I shot with my left foot and went over the goalie’s head.”
Hope Churley added the second Bulldogs’ goal after taking a corner kick from Maddy Clark and sending it through traffic for the 2-0 lead with 20:06 remaining before the break. It was her first of the season.
“Whenever I went up, I went up late,” Churley said. “I was marked, but I was open. It was just wide open and I found the right spot.”
Lakeview added goals from Reagan Rosenberger — with 32:40 remaining in the contest — and Hailey Raines — with 25:55 to play — to go up, 4-0.
“I think the way I got that goal was we were working together,” Rosenberger said. “I’m glad I have the team I have. We work so good together.”
“It was a good combination from the right corner,” Raines said. “Bella (Kakiou) made a nice throw and Rachel dummied it well. I put it into the bottom left corner.”
The Bulldogs managed to limit the opportunities of Hubbard star Marissa Grande until late in the contest.
“Basically, we were not letting them hit that long ball,” Varley said. “We were keeping Hubbard from finding (Grande) on the field. Our midfielders were putting pressure on them defensively so they couldn’t get the ball to her. Once she gets moving, it’s hard to stop that kid.”
Grande assisted on a goal from Cassidy Costick as the Eagles cut their deficit to 4-1 with 5:01 to play in the match.
“Lakeview is a very good team and while we tried hard and gave it our all, we just came up short,” Hubbard coach Scott MacMillan said. “We started the season with 22 players, are down five starters and played tonight with just 14 players, but that is no excuse.”