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September 16, 2021
Danvers 0 - Bishop Fenwick 0

Danvers hosted Bishop Fenwick Thursday night in a battle of 2 of the very best teams from a year ago, and two teams starting off this young season unbeaten as well.  Danvers came into the match with a 3-0 record and B. Fenwick at 1-0.  With great weather and a very large crowd, this was sure to be an entertaining game.  The game went back and forth throughout the first half with both teams spending time in the other's end of the field.  Danvers had the more dangerous chances of the two teams but Fenwick had some dangerous threats of their own.  Late in the half, Falcon Junior goalie Emily Goddard came off her line charging at an incoming Crusader attacker.  Goddard came up big and made the impressive save keeping the game scoreless.  The Danvers defense played very strong and did well to handle B. Fenwick's speed up top.  Junior outside backs Ryley Crosby and Mikayla Shaffaval did a remarkable job shutting down the visitors top scoring threat, Ally Mitchell.


"Ryley and Mikayla played so aggressively tonight.  Mitchell is extremely fast but both girls defended her very well.  Ryley shut her down throughout the first half and Mikayla did the same the second half."


Danvers best chance came on a direct kick that senior captain Arianna Bezanson put off the crossbar, narrowly missing.  After 40 minutes the game was 0-0.


"The game was pretty even throughout that first half.  I felt we could improve by connecting more in the middle of the field.  It seemed we were playing over our midfield through much of the half and we were skipping that part of the field."


Danvers came out on fire the second half and applied relentless pressure on B. Fenwick.  Danvers winger Ellie Anderson made some terrific runs up the left side of the field and played at a ferocious pace the entire second half.  Freshman Georgia Prouty was outstanding finding open teammates in the attack and Arianna Bezanson was fabulous at taking on defenders.  However, the Crusaders chose to bring more defenders back and played a bunker defense throughout much of the second half.  That, coupled with great play from senior keeper, Claudia Keithe kept the Falcons off the score board.  Junior midfielder Courtney Hinchion made several great through ball passes to both Anderson and Prouty, creating some strong offensive opportunities.  Still, the visitors stayed strong defensively.  Once again, the best opportunity came off the foot of Bezanson.  After beating a couple of defenders towards the right side of the 18 yard box, it appeared she had the keeper beat.  Her shot, however, rolled wide of the far post by inches.  The last few minutes of the game were spent with Danvers having a couple of corner kicks and turning up the offensive pressure even more.  However, it was not meant to be on this night and the Crusaders hung on for the 0-0 tie.


"That was our best 40 minutes of soccer so far this year.  We were in their end for about 80% of the second half.  The passing combinations were nice and we got several good opportunities but just couldn't catch the break we needed.  I loved the way senior captains Emma Dunn and Gabby Chisholm played at center back today.  They didn't let B. Fenwick out of their own end for long periods of time in the second half.  Both Emma and Gabby were excellent on balls in the air and their first touches were spot on."


"Before the season started I kind of figured this would be one of the top 2-3 teams we would play on our schedule.  B. Fenwick was solid last year and most of that team was back.  We'll certainly learn from this and we'll become a stronger team from playing them."


Danvers hosts Beverly next Tuesday night at 6:30.  It will be senior night for the Falcons and they look forward to recognizing their 8 awesome seniors.

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