RICHMOND — A wide-open shot from 12 yards away with nothing other than the goalkeeper in between you and the back of the net.

Easy, right?

“It’s scary. It really is,” Kelsea Anair, a senior on the Richmond High School girls soccer team, said. “Your whole team is counting on you and everything like that.

“The worst part is probably the outcome if you miss. Oh my god, it’s terrible because you’re one-on-one and you’re standing there, she isn’t moving, you aren’t moving.”

Anair did not let her nerves get the best of her on Thursday, as her penalty kick strike with 26 minutes, 36 seconds remaining in the first half proved to be the difference in a 1-0 victory over Western C contender Sacopee.

“I thought we’d have our hands full and we did,” Richmond coach Troy Kendrick said. “The kids really gutted it out.”

Anair’s score was set up by a penalty drawn by Autumn Acord, as the junior was tripped inside the box as she came charging in to try and get a piece of a cross.

Once the Bobcats (8-0-0) — who played without starters Amber Loon and Kayla Patterson — went ahead, however, their works was hardly finished.

In the 27th minute the Hawks (8-1-0) very nearly tied the game after a cross from right to left along the goal line got past Richmond goalkeeper Kelsie Obi, but the ball passed by two Sacopee players in front of the net as neither could get a foot on it amidst the clutter.

The Hawks continued to apply pressure though, culminating in a frantic finish in the final 12 minutes. Sacopee put five shots on Obi — who finished with 12 saves — during that time frame, but could not sneak one past the senior goalie.

“We had a few breakdowns but we didn’t give them a lot of good looks,” Kendrick said. “You know it’s just going to be ramble scramble and just hope they don’t get lucky on you.”

The win allowed the Bobcats’ record to remain unblemished on the season, but it also showed the team that they are not invincible. Prior to Thursday’s contest Richmond had won all of its games by at least three goals, most by many more.

“This is kind of a wake up call,” Kendrick said. “The kids knew they had our backs against the wall a little bit. I liked the way they responded.”

Evan Crawley — 621-5640

[email protected]

Twitter: @Evan_Crawley

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