Lady Hornets kick off new soccer season with a 1-1 tie

By TED WADDELL
Posted 10/7/20

HONESDALE, PA — No matter how you slice it, a one-to-one tie is better than a loss.

Not as good as a win, but it shows you’re in the game.

On Tuesday, September 22, the Lady Hornets …

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Lady Hornets kick off new soccer season with a 1-1 tie

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HONESDALE, PA — No matter how you slice it, a one-to-one tie is better than a loss.

Not as good as a win, but it shows you’re in the game.

On Tuesday, September 22, the Lady Hornets of Honesdale High opened up their varsity soccer season against the visiting Scranton High Lady Knights, in a PIAA Lackawanna League Division II matchup on the home team’s lower soccer field, part of the Daniel J. O’Neill Sports Complex.

As with the afternoon before, the local high school honored their senior booters with what was billed as “Senior Sport Night Recognition,” only this time, it was the girls who basked in the limelight with their folks before the start of the match.

Scranton was first out of the blocks at approximately six minutes into the game, as Riley Bittenbender beat the Lady Hornets keeper off a dribble.

As the first frame clock ticked down, Honesdale rallied to put a shot into the opposing net when Megan Bidwell tied up 1-1 with a strong shot off the dribble.

That’s where the match stayed at the end of regulation play, plus a couple of mandated 10-minute periods of overtime.

Going into the game, the Scranton girls’ varsity soccer team, coached by Matt Loughney, took to the field with an early season 0-2 record.

Stats: shots on goal (HHS 17, SHS 12), keeper saves (HHS’s Allison Billard 12, SHS’s Lanee Olson 16), corner kicks (HHS 7, SHS 7), direct kicks (HHS 5, SHS 1).

For the new soccer season, the Honesdale girls’ varsity soccer roster lists five seniors, eight juniors, four sophomores and 10 up-and-coming freshmen.

According to second-year coach Lesley Freer, last year her team posted a 7-6 overall record, and one of the team’s primary goals for this year is to have a .500 or better season.

“We have a really young team this year,” said Freer, adding, “We’re looking to grow some unity together, new girls filling in some really big shoes from last year to fill those positions and grow in our fundamental skills.”

Asked about the squad’s strengths, she said that, on the plus side, the Lady Hornets are good-to-go in “communication and ball movement, moving the ball back and forth… They don’t panic, they’re a very composed team, and the benefit for us is the front end—the offense.

“We are pretty good at getting the ball out of the back,” added Freer.

This year’s team is co-captained by a trio of seniors (Shannon O’Day, Abagail Meagher and Megan Bidwell), while the other two 12th-graders (Courtney Barone and Julia Eisele) nail down the numbers as statisticians.

Asked for a few comments about her style of leadership, Freer replied, “My coaching philosophy is that I want to push each player to build on the skills they come to me with. We try to design our practices so that each drill can be tailored for each player and what they need to get out of it. Not all players are at the same level, so it does take time.

“We also try to teach our players that we are using soccer to build their character,” she continued. “We hope they grow as a person, along with growing their skill sets.”

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