CASTLETON — The Vermont team could easily identify where they lost the women’s game of the Lions Twin State Soccer Cup, a 3-1 setback to New Hampshire in Saturday’s annual all-star game pitting the recent high school graduates of the two states against one another.
The Vermonters dominated the first half, had the far superior scoring chances, but failed to capitalize and went to halftime locked in a scoreless tie.
“We had our chances,” Vermont coach Carolynn Hamilton said.
They were quality chances at that. The first one came when Vergennes’ Ciara McClay nailed a hard shot that was ticketed for the far corner only to have New Hampshire goalie Katie Lorden deny her with a diving save.
Then, it was Tatum Shappy threatening. Milton’s all-time leading goal scorer worked herself in a one-on-one situation with Lorden, had a great look, but shot wide.
Shappy had another shot that went just over the bar and there was another near miss off the foot of CVU’s Sydney Jimmo in the waning seconds of the half. Jimmo’s shot whistled just wide of the far post.
But instead of having a two-or-three goal lead, the Vermonters were in a stalemate and New Hampshire came out breathing some fire in the second half.
“We came out with a lot of energy in the first half. I think we still had a lot of energy in the second half but New Hampshire had more,” Vermont goalie Elise Magro said.
Magro did all she could do, keeping the net empty during the first half before giving way to Milton keeper Madison North.
Magro was presented the 12th Player Award after the game.
“I didn’t have a lot of shots on me but that was because I had a really great defense in front of me,” Magro said.
She credited Burr and Burton Academy’s Aisha Navarette and Peoples Academy’s Lily Metzler, with making some big defensive stops in that opening 45 minutes.
Then came the second half and the nets began to look bigger. It did not take long for the scoring to begin. It was 5:13 into the second half when Concord’s Grace Devanny sent a low shot into the corner.
Vermont answered quickly. It was only about eight minutes later that Shappy drew Vermont even with Metzler getting the assist.
The rest of the day belonged to the Granite Staters. Milford’s Ashleih Matsis scored with 20:14 remaining. Bow’s Amanda Marshall then scored via an assist from Stevens High School’s all-time leading scorer Audrey Puksta with 7:57 to play.
Devanny was named the New Hampshire MVP and Shappy collected the award for Vermont.
Mattis was the recipient of the New Hampshire 12th Player Award.
The Sportsmanship Award takes into account the way a players conducts themselves not only during the game but during the entire camp which opened Thursday morning. Trinity’s Hannah Jaworski took home that trophy for New Hampshire and Oxbow’s Zoe Barton was the Vermont recipient.
“I think both teams played with a lot of energy,” New Hampshire coach Rick Morgan said.
That was high praise for the players on a day where oppressive heat and humidity baked the artificial surface of Dave Wolk Stadium. The officials called for water breaks in each half.
“I think we just kind of figured things out in the second half,” Morgan said.
“We changed our formation and then they changed their formation so we had to change ours again.
“It’s hard when you only have a couple of days of camp. I think we just figured things out in the second half.”
NOTES: Mount Abraham’s Dustin Corrigan will be the Vermont head coach next year after serving as one of Hamilton’s assistants. ... It was the second straight win for New Hampshire and the Granite Staters lead the series 19-13-5. ... This was the second straight year the game was held at Castleton. The 2020 venue has not been determined.