Tigers rally past upset-minded Elkhart


PAIGE NELSON (14) of Elkhart Lake and Howards Grove’s Kaitlynn Near (18) and Rayven Kalmerton fight for ball control in Thursday’s soccer match. – Photo by Mike McGill PAIGE NELSON (14) of Elkhart Lake and Howards Grove’s Kaitlynn Near (18) and Rayven Kalmerton fight for ball control in Thursday’s soccer match. – Photo by Mike McGill ELKHART LAKE – The rematch between the Elkhart Lake- Glenbeulah Resorters and the Howards Grove Tigers was much different than the first meeting this season.

The Tigers rolled to an 8-1 win on April 25. Thursday afternoon, the Resorters gave HGHS all it could handle before falling, 3-2, in a Big East Conference girls soccer match at Elkhart.

HGHS upped its BEC-leading record to 10-0-1 (11-2-1 overall). The Resorters dropped to 1-10 in the league (1-11 overall).

Elkhart stunned the Tigers with two goals in the first 8:41 by junior forward Camrie Schmitz which gave the Resorters a 2-0 lead. Monica Ruh assisted on the second goal.

The Tigers shaved the lead to 2-1 at halftime on a goal by junior forward/ midfielder Emily Schmid at the 34:15 mark. Kaitlynn Near had an assist.

HGHS tied the match, 2-2, on junior defender/midfielder Kaitlynn Near’s goal at the 51:15 mark.

Freshman forward Kate Bruckschen kicked the eventual gamewinning goal at the 59:45 mark which gave the Tigers a 3-2 lead. Morgan Wittman was credited with an assist.

“The girls showed some serious poise and our leadership stepped up and kept the girls on track after we were blitzed by Camrie Schmitz,” said Tiger head coach Kasey Smith.

“She is a dynamite player and her speed showed in two breakaway goals in the first 10 minutes. Prior to both goals we had been deep and putting heaving pressure on them, so I think our girls understood that with over 80 minutes left we could come back and win the game.

“Elkhart Lake played with a lot of intensity in the first half. I just think that the constant pressure we applied ran them down in the end,” said Smith.

TAYLOR PORTER, Elkhart Lake goalie, makes one of her 26 saves in Thursday’s soccer match versus Howards Grove. Looking on are Elkhart’s Kayla Theel (22) and two unidentified teammates, and the Tigers’ Brittany Schaller. – Photo by Mike McGill

TAYLOR PORTER, Elkhart Lake goalie, makes one of her 26 saves in Thursday’s soccer match versus Howards Grove. Looking on are Elkhart’s Kayla Theel (22) and two unidentified teammates, and the Tigers’ Brittany Schaller. – Photo by Mike McGill

“You can never be happy with a loss, however last night we played a very solid game all around,” said Resorter head coach Kevin Ruh.

“For the first time since the first game we had all our girls back [many coming off injuries] which gave us the ability to play players where we wanted to, not where we had to because of an injury. We started strong and controlled the middle of the and quickly switched the field, giving Camrie good runs in the first half.

“Howards Grove kept their attack up throughout the game. The difference in this game was our midfielders cutting off the lanes of Howards Grove’s attacking midfield fielders and not allowing them to run towards the goal unchecked,” said coach Ruh.

The Tigers led 29-6 in shots on goal. Elkhart junior goalie Taylor Porter played a strong game with 26 saves. HGHS goalie Olivia Stauss made five.

“Taylor Porter played very aggressively tonight – coming up with 26 saves, many of which were pass attempts to their striker which she attacked rather than wait for them to come to her,” coach Ruh pointed out.

“Kaitlynn Near continued to gain momentum at forward, applying pressure all game on the Resorters. She finished the evening with one goal, one assist, and 11 shots on goal and several just wide of the post,” said Smith.

“Erica Heinig and Shynaia Higgins played great in the middle, pushing the attacking players to the sides and not allowing clean shots on goal,” said coach Ruh.


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