WATERVILLE — Sophie Webb and her Waterville girls soccer teammates made things look awfully easy Friday afternoon.

Webb scored four goals and set up a fifth, leading the Purple Panthers over Mount View 7-0 in a Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Class B game at Webber Field. Anika Elias added two goals of her own as the Panthers improved to 3-0-0.

“I knew we had most of our top offensive players returning this year,” Webb said of the strong start for Waterville. “I thought we’d be pretty strong, and it’s going well so far.”

Waterville wasted little time getting the attacking game going, as Elias put the Panthers on the board in the first minute. Webb hit the right post with a hard shot and when the ball was never cleared out of harm’s way, Elias pounced on it for the game’s first goal.

Webb followed up 11 minutes later with her first, heading home an Elias corner kick. Two minutes after that, Webb collected an errant goal kick deep in the Mount View third of the pitch and popped that home for a 3-0 lead.

“We’d been having a lot of trouble getting off to good, quick starts,” Webb said. “It was definitely good to get off to one today.”

“Sophie came ready to play,” Waterville head coach Mark Serdjenian said. “She’s got good people behind her. We’ve got strong players around here, and it’s a combination of her knack (for scoring) and the fact that she’s getting pretty good service, as well. (Anika) and Mackenzie (St. Pierre) are really the engine in the center of the field.”

In the stifling summerlike heat and humidity, it was a mountain Mount View couldn’t climb. The Mustangs dropped to 0-3-0 with the loss.

“We’re shallow. We have a pretty short bench, so when it’s hot and humid like this, it’s tough for us to compete against teams that can just keep rolling players out there,” said Mount View coach Dave Page, who was pleased with his team’s effort, which he said was much better than it was in a 1-0 loss to Medomak Valley earlier in the week. “When the weather cools off, I think we’re going to flourish. We’re going to be OK.”

Waterville wouldn’t score again in the first half, but the Panthers clearly carried the play throughout the remaining 25 minutes. Shot totals aren’t always an accurate barometer for possession numbers, but on this day they more than told the story.

The Panthers held a 14-1 shot advantage through 40 minutes; it was 26-2 for Waterville at the final whistle.

The Mustangs came out with more vigor in the second half, conceding fewer top-flight scoring opportunities to their hosts. But when center back Elise Brown went down with an injury, it opened up all the space Webb needed. She struck quickly, heading in a long service from midfield off the foot of St. Pierre in the 64th minute and adding her fourth of the day in the 66th minute.

With her four goals Friday, Webb pushed her total to eight on the season.

“She’s definitely one of the top elite strikers in the league, for sure,” Page said of Webb. “She has the skills and speed, the whole package. And, she has the players that give her the ball that are advantageous to her. They know where she can take advantage of the ball, and they give it to her there. They set her up, but she still finishes.”

Elias’ second followed in the 68th minute and Sofie Weston capped the scoring two minutes later.

Waterville’s ability to dictate pace and possession in the midfield makes the biggest difference when it comes to wearing down opposing defenders.

“We keep a lot of strong players in the middle of the field,” Webb said. “I think that makes it easier for us to play the ball through there. We’d like to play the ball a little more to feet and not so much over the top, but I definitely think we’ll be a team to contend with in the playoffs.”

Travis Barrett — 621-5621

[email protected]

Twitter: @TBarrettGWC

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