LISBON — The Mt. Abram and Lisbon girls soccer teams expected a tight Mountain Valley Conference clash Wednesday with each team entering Wednesday with just one loss.

After a scoreless opening half, the Greyhounds (4-1-1) broke things open in the second half to pull out a 3-0 victory.

“We absolutely knew this was going to be a physical game,” Lisbon coach Jenniffer Perron said. “We explained to the girls not to let that (style of play) get into their heads. We played level-headed (Wednesday).”

Senior Sophia DiGregorio scored eight minutes into the second half. Less than 10 minutes later, Giana Russo converted a rebound off a Kiley Merritt shot that eluded Mt. Abram keeper Emily Kidd (seven saves) to extend the lead.

Mt. Abram (6-2-0), only firing one shot on goal in the first half, applied more pressure on the Lisbon defense and netminder Sarah Haggerty in the second half.

“Sarah has never been a goalie before this year and she was all for doing it,” Perron said. “She is a sponge, she wants to always learn. She has far exceeded my expectations for her.”

Not to mention the handful of times she came out of the net to stop a Mt. Abram chance.

“(Wednesday) she was aggressive and made some really good choices,” added Perron. “There’s been times where she has held back a little, being young at this, but today she really showed her aggressiveness and made some smart decisions.”

“My goalie coach (assistant coach Butch Dow) is always telling me not to wait, but always be the first one there to get the ball and really be aggressive,” Haggerty added.

Much like the first half, the Lisbon defense continued to buckle down on the visitors, limiting any chances near the net.

“We work really hard on the rotations so that we have coverage at all times,” Perron said. “If our sweeper is up, our stopper slides back at sweep and so forth. We have that rotation in the back so that we make sure we’re covered. We knew they had some quick girls and they were physical, so we knew we had to communicate well.”

Siara Martin directed traffic on defense, positioning Erica Hill, Caitlyn Hall and Abbel Lebel throughout the game, marking up on Mt. Abram’s front line, including Summer Ross and Alice Cockerham.

Haggerty credits her defense with assisting her in net.

“They really help me out a lot of the time and I appreciate them a lot,” she said.

For Mt. Abram, the missed opportunities are something the Roadrunners will take and learn from.

“It was frustrating,” said Mt. Abram coach Lanie Roy, who took over the team during the third week of the season. “Our word of the season is ‘adversity’ as we’ve been dealing with it quite a bit this season. We were expecting this kind of play today, battling to get the chances we had and working together in a hard game. Overall, if some of those balls went a different way it could have been a different game.”

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