By DAVID AQUINO
WESTMINSTER -- A few days before the Bellows Falls girls soccer team hosted Long Trail in their home opener, John Broadley, the Terriers head coach, said his team would handle the Lynx no problem.
Not so fast.
Lynx coach Tim Cassidy had a different opinion, saying his team had improved dramatically since last year, and it showed.
The Terriers won, but they had to dig it out, because the visitors held strong, and put up a decent fight.
"We came out a little rusty," said Broadley. "But sometimes, with games like this, you just have to do enough to win."
And Lydia Pedigo's sole goal was all Bellows Falls needed Tuesday, to beat the Lynx, 1-0.
The senior team captain put away the shot on a penalty kick early in the second half. She took her time, psyched out the Lynx keeper with a half-step, then booted it into the bottom left corner.
"We found, last year, that no one wanted to take penalty shots," said Broadley. "Pedgio stepped up. She listened all along. It's not about blasting the ball. It's a lot of pressure taking a kick like that, but I think she's comfortable with it."
Bellows Falls applied the pressure early on, attacking from both sides to keep Long Trail goalie on her toes. The Terrier's Chelsea Wilder commanded the field on offense. The right-winger gave the visitors all sorts of trouble, but blew a few key opportunities herself, even though she was setting up her teammates with some chances of their own. Wilder will undoubtedly improve though, said Broadley.
Alyssa DeJesus made her varsity appearance in the Bellows Falls goal, and shined with over a half-dozen saves, including some diving stops midway through the second half as Long Trail appeared to have changed up their strategy after the break. Broadley said he's been sending the aspiring sophomore keeper to a camp in Keene, N.H. for additional training.
The Terriers head to MSJ Friday for their next game.
David Aquino can be reached at email@example.com, or by calling 802-254-2311, ext. 164.
Twin Valley 3, Arlington 1
WILMINGTON -- Foreign exchange student Henriette Aas, from Norway, tallied twice to lead the Wildcats in their season opener on Tuesday.
"I'm very pleased with our opener," said Twin Valley coach Chris Walling. "It's good to get that first one under our belts."
Savannah Nesbitt set up Aas both times, with the first coming 30 minutes in and the second capping the scoring off of a corner. Sammy Cunningham also got an assist on that one.
Arlington's Molly Elwell tied it late in the first half, but Caitlin Hunt gave Twin Valley the lead for good by splitting the posts 17 minutes into the second half. Jordan Niles set that one up.
"I'm very optimistic about this team. It's a good group and they are hungry," added Walling.
Jess Fox and goalie Jessica Riley had solid games for the winners, according to their coach.
The 1-0 Wildcats will host Mill River on Thursday.