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Falcon stickers battle to 3-1 win
RUMFORD -- Things change through out any athletic contest, so it's vital for a team to be able to adjust and Mountain Valley proved it has the right moves.
Nicole Burgess and Payton Provencher each scored goals in the second half, including the eventual game winner and Ellie Hall stepped up defensively as the Lady Falcons battled to a 3-1 win against Oak Hill. The game at Hosmer Complex was the first-ever meeting between the teams. Oak Hill joined the Mountain Valley Conference this season.
Mountain Valley entered the game knowing a lot was on the line as they started strong. The defense had to be adjusted during warmups, with Hall moving out to fullback because Addy Gorham was sick. Kristin Brown was inserted at sweeper.
Following a time out by MV midway through the first half, freshman Lexy Duguay scored from the door step. Senior Taylor Dickson took the initial shot and the rebound bounced back. She alertly tapped the ball over to Duguay on the left, who forehanded it past Oak Hill goalie Abby Fuller (eight saves) at 20:25.
"We tried not to underestimate them," said Burgess. "(Class B) Oak Hill didn't have a bad record (4-5) and they were worth a lot of Heal Points."
Burgress was also pleased with the strong start because the Falcons are normally a second half team. Oak Hill had supplied pressure, but Hall cleared balls out of zone.
MV controlled the ball and Burgess scored on a pass from Alexa Fryover, 2:59 in the second half. Fryover had secured her own rebound and passed forward to Burgess.
“Oak Hill really needed this and played us tough,” said Mountain Valley coach Melissa Forbes, who saw Falcons improve to 7-2-1 and have games with Winthrop (yesterday) and Dirigo. "They were playing up on us on long hits, so we needed to adjust (pass with a purpose instead of whacking it) and we created more rushes in second half.”
Oak Hill's Bailee Ayres beat MV goalie Venessa Swett (three saves) to trail 2-1 at 19:12.
The Falcon one-two punch added insurance, when Payton Provencher scored off a crossing pass by Burgess with 3:55 left in the game.
“We really played together as a team,"Burgess said. “Our passing game was (crisp)."