WATERVILLE — Waterville rallied from a two-goal, second-half deficit to salvage a 3-3 tie in a double overtime Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Class A girls soccer game against Erskine Academy on Thursday at Webber Field.

A tactical change by Waterville (4-2-3) at halftime turned the flow of the game in its favor and helped the Panthers gain a 9-2 shot advantage in the second half.

“I made a real bad coaching decision after we tied Oxford Hills in our last game,” Waterville coach Ian Wilson said. “I changed our formation trying to generate more offense. We had one day of practice and I expected it to work.”

Erskine (4-3-2) took full advantage of Waterville playing in a 3-4-3 scheme in the first half and dominated play. The Eagles used an outstanding passing game that flowed freely through the middle of the field. Erskine led 2-1 at the half and appeared in control when Avery Bond gave the Eagles a 3-1 lead just over two minutes into the second half.

“That was a real poor piece of coaching,” Wilson said. “Erskine played really well and took advantage of us in the first half.”

Reverting back to a more comfortable and familiar defensive rotation in the back, Waterville shut down Erskine’s attack while forcing the transition game to the other end of the field.

“Our game was passing the ball and we started chasing it,” Erskine midfielder Kelly McCormac said. “We were hoping to come out with a win but we are happy with a tie.”

Waterville took a 1-0 lead on a goal by Lydia Roy at 19:39, when she converted a through pass from Sarah Shoulta. Erskine responded when McCormac got the ball at the midfield stripe, raced down the field to the endline and fed a pass that Bond kicked in at 15:40.

Baylee Doughty gave Erskine a 2-1 lead with an assist from Bridget Humphrey and Bond made it 3-1 at 38:06 of the second half.

Then, Waterville unleashed a number of shots during the next 10 minutes, but was unable to beat Erskine goalie Mattie Lajoie, who finished with eight saves.

“Mattie did an excellent job in the goal for us,” Erksine coach Ryan Nored said. “Our regular goalie is out injured and Mattie was outstanding.”

Waterville finally converted when a corner kick was deflected into the goal at 26:40 to make it 3-2.

“Waterville took us out of our game,” Nored said. “They were clogging the middle, we needed to work the outside and didn’t.”

Just 37 seconds after the Erskine own goal, Waterville struck again when Shoulta slammed home the tying goal from inside the penalty area with 26:03 left in the game.

Waterville keeper Gabrielle Martin finished with three saves.

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