03/16/07 — McCormick scores twice, Rosewood shuts out WCDS

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McCormick scores twice, Rosewood shuts out WCDS

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on March 16, 2007 2:42 PM

Rachel McCormick trotted off the field and leaned against the fence. Hands on hips, she caught her breath and took a few swigs from the water bottle.

It was a well-deserved break.

McCormick provided the offensive firepower and her Rosewood teammates played solid defense in a 2-0, non-conference victory over Wayne Country Day on Thursday evening. A senior, McCormick tallied both goals -- one in each half -- during the battle of unbeatens at Branch Pope Field. The Eagles improved to 4-0 overall, while the Chargers suffered their first defeat in three outings.

"We started out real slow and I think the whole game we were almost a step behind," said RHS head coach Eddie Maldonado. "We weren't thinking as quick as we should and our play was slow tonight. I'm glad we came out with the win.

"No disrespect to Wayne Country Day. They gave us probably the best game we've had all season."

Neither team manufactured any consistent play in its midfield. Rosewood bunched up around the ball on throw-ins, while WCDS continued to work through a new alignment that takes away an extra midfield player.

The injury-riddled Chargers couldn't organize any offensive attacks and constantly lost possession of the ball, especially on headers.

"We are a very young team," said first-year WCDS head coach Molly Morrow. "I've got three seniors and I have to find the leadership. Then I can find the organization and we can progress.

"We're working on things, trying to see what is going to do best for us and eventually we'll find that."

McCormick broke the scoreless tie late in the opening half.

The Eagles strung together a few passes, stretched the Chargers' defense and McCormick got loose down the far sideline. Freshman forward Kathryn Seymour flicked a quick pass to McCormick, who tucked the ball into the net just inside the near post.

"They had four people on the back and played really aggressive defense back there,'' said McCormick, who has seven goals in four matches. "(Our) midfield pushing up a lot really helped the team by passing it and pushing into the outside.

"We put some passes together and the ball came through (the defense). I turned and just shot on goal."

Down 1-0, Wayne Country Day put pressure on Rosewood's defense the final 10 minutes of the half. Senior Georgia Crow misfired on a breakaway opportunity and Virginia Best just missed converting a floater outside the 18-yard box.

Eagle keeper Taylor Johnson stopped another Crow attempt to preserve Rosewood's 1-0 lead at halftime.

"Whenever you get that first goal, that always seems to pick you up a little bit," said Maldonado. "But we weren't making the runs like we should. We weren't looking to pass the ball around; just playing too direct tonight.

"At halftime, I told them we were lucky to be up 1-0. I said if we didn't pick it up a little bit, we could easily come out of this with a loss or tie."

McCormick notched her second goal in the 52nd minute.

Rosewood put the ball in play near its sideline and the ball bounced around free inside the box. Mary Jo Moore got a toe on the ball and McCormick booted it past WCDS keeper Ellen Elmore, who got screened by a teammate on the play.

"I just tapped it in," said McCormick.

Wayne Country Day, again, threatened to pull within one goal on several occasions. But the Chargers couldn't produce in the clutch.

Morrow's team misfired on 10 corner kicks, two direct kicks and one indirect kick. They owned a 15-7 advantage in shots on goal.

"We couldn't put one in the back of the net," said Morrow. "Some of our players aren't 100 percent and dealing with injuries. That is definitely prohibiting our shots and set pieces.

"You've kind of got to deal with it."

W. Country Day 0 0 -- 0

Rosewood 1 1 -- 0

First half

RHS -- McCormick (Seymour assist)

Second half

RHS -- McCormick (Moore assist)

Shots on goal -- WCDS 15, Rosewood 7. Corner kicks -- WCDS 10, Rosewood 1. Offsides -- Rosewood 1. Fouls -- WCDS 6, Rosewood 8. Saves -- WCDS (Elmore 4), Rosewood (Johnson 5).

Records: Rosewood 4-0, WCDS 2-1.