GARDINER — The picture in the Class B division of the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference is still a little fuzzy as teams approach the midway point of the season..

But one thing is abundantly clear. If you don’t keep an eye on Ally Day, you’ll pay the price. The Gardiner junior scored two goals Tuesday to lead the Tigers to a 4-2 win against Nokomis, and her contributions didn’t end there.

Day played goalie late in the game after regular keeper Maddie Cutler sustained a cut to her forehead and stopped a penalty shot.

“She’s physical and she’s fast,” Gardiner coach Chad Kirk said. “Her athletic ability is there.”

Day made two nice plays to give the Tigers a 2-0 lead 15 minutes into the game. On the first, she shielded off a defender as she took a long pass from Brittany Carver, settled the ball and beat Nokomis keeper Becky Orcutt along the ground. It was Day’s 17th goal in seven games.

“We marked her after the first (goal),” Nokomis coach Gary Sinclair said. “This conference is new to me. There’s a lot of players I haven’t seen and some of these coaches aren’t very helpful to the new guy.”

Day made it 2-0 when she headed in a well-placed chip pass from Kylee Granholm at the right post. Gardiner (6-1-0) made it 3-0 when sophomore Morgan Carver beat a defender near the end line, drew Orcutt out of the goal and hit a tough angle shot to the far corner.

From that point to the half, the Warriors (3-3-0) played their best soccer of the game, getting a goal from Kalee Kerschner who dribbled in from midfield and beat Cutler to the right corner. Kelsie Richards cut the lead to 3-2 a few minutes later with another solo effort down the right side that finished with a shot that bounced off the post into the goal.

“We’ve got to come out and play 80 minutes instead of 20 minutes here and 20 minutes there,” Sinclair said.

Play grew physical in the second half, particularly at midfield. The Tigers made it 4-2 early on when Granholm converted a penalty kick. Momentum fluctuated between both teams and both goalkeepers were tested. Cutler (six saves) made a point blank stop off Alyssa Monk following a corner kick.

Day moved to goalie with just under eight minutes left after Cutler took an inadvertent kick to the head. She made three saves, none better than her stop on a penalty kick by Audrey Temple with 7:20 left.

“It is tough not being warmed up, but I played goal most of last year, so I know how to do it,” Day said.

Temple put a hard shot on goal that Day deflected as she moved to her left.

“You look at their eyes and their belly button because they can’t move without that (moving),” Day said.

Gary Hawkins — 621-5638

[email protected]

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