Canfield wins battle of Cards
CANFIELD — The battle of the Cardinals doesn’t come around too often for the Canfield and Mooney girls’ soccer programs.
For the first time in seven years, the two schools faced each other on the pitch, with a trip to the Division II Northeast I district final on the line.
Canfield defended its home turf with a 6-0 shutout of Mooney and advanced to the district finals for the fourth straight season.
“It means a lot, with the super district being thrown at us this year, we didn’t know what to expect,” Canfield coach Phil Simone said. “Mooney has had a good season. We thought we were up for a game tonight.
“We had the girls pumped up, ready to go, and they came to play tonight, so it was fun to watch them come and actually show up and put all the pieces together tonight.”
Junior Lauren Yohman had a third of Canfield’s six goals with a score in the first and second half.
She also recorded an assist, and she was happy to see a few different Cardinals find the back of the net.
“We came out here wanting to win,” she said. “We already had it thought in our head that we wanted to come out here and be strong, and once we got our first goal, I think we really woke up and just kept going.
“We know that they’re one defender was pretty good, so we just had to work together and pass and make our plays and score.”
Sophomore Addy Masters tallied the first goal that barely found its way into the side of the post within the first 6 minutes of the match following a corner kick.
Senior Morgan Carey assisted junior Sabrina Goodrich on a goal following halftime to push the Cardinals lead to three.
Carey highlighted the importance of building a lead early, especially in a postseason game.
“We try to get them down early, so it makes it easier for the rest of the game,” she said. “Like, we don’t have to stress out or anything.
“So, once we get one, I feel like they kinda flow a little bit easier, and we become less panicked, more relaxed and good to go.”
She also found the back of the net in the second half, but not before junior Alli Malinky scored with an assist from Yoham.
As a senior, playoff wins just mean a little bit more.
“You never know if it’s going to be your last game with corona and the playoffs,” Carey said. “You just never know, so you just gotta play your heart out and hope for the best.”
Canfield outshot Mooney 19-4, and junior goalkeeper Bayann Jadallah recorded a pair of saves, to go along with Canfield’s eighth cleansheet of the season.
Mooney ends their season with a mark of 13-3-2, and coach Olivia Murphy has a lot of respect for her nine seniors, who are Natalie Kovacs, Annalise Daprile, Lucy Graziano, Paige Pavlock, Gia Diorio, Maureen Baker, Mackenzie Avery, Anna Wollet and Madison Richey.
“My senior class is really incredibly dedicated,” Murphy said. “They came out, every single day at 7 a.m. for practice starting June 1. They really had goals and visions in mind, so I saw a lot of senior leadership, and it was hard to even decide captains from that because they all cared about the team, they all put the dedication in.”
After losing such a large senior class, Murphy is ready for the younger players to step up.
“We’re looking forward to having a young team next season,” she said. “I’m a coach that always looks forward to the future, and I know the girls I got coming in our going to be my future. We might be young, but we’re coming for blood.”
Canfield (13-3-2) will host Kenston on Thursday in the regional final and Simone is excited for the match.
“We’re grateful to be back at a district final, and just thankful with COVID and everything that we’re actually still playing this late,” Simone said. “We just look forward to having that opportunity to play on Thursday night.”