September 27, 2021
Danvers 1 - Swampscott 0
The Danvers Varsity Girls Soccer Team traveled to Swampscott Monday evening for an N.E.C. battle that always entertains when these two teams meet up. Danvers was at the end of a 4 games in 7 days and was hoping to get the 4th win during that time span.
"Coming into this season I had Swampscott as one of the teams that would be very good again in our league. They returned most of their starters from a year ago and they played us tough, twice last year. They always seem to defend us well. Plus with this being our 4th game in 7 days and the win blowing as hard as it was, I had a feeling this would be a tough game."
Swampcott had a decisive territorial advantage throughout most of the first half with the strong wind at their backs. However, even with play mostly in the Danvers end, the Falcons held Swampscott to only 3 shots and keeper Emily Goddard only had to make 2 saves. Danvers on the other hand, struggled to get their passing game going and had trouble adjusting to wind and the bouncing of the ball on the turf. Danvers mustered 7 shots in the half, but all but one came in the final 5 minutes of the half.
"We struggled as I worried we would. They were playing long balls over our midfield with that wind and our defenders and mids had a tough time taking balls out of the air. I figured having the wind at our backs the second half would help, but we still needed to find a way to get more chances on their goal."
Danvers finally put a string of quick 1 and 2 touch passing together in the 14th minute of the second half. Junior Courtney Hinchion corralled a ball in the Swampscott end of the field and made a quick pass to junior Ellie Anderson who them passed to senior Reese Pszenny. Pszenny then found a breaking Arianna Bezanson and fed her a through pass on goal. The senior captain placed her shot in the back right of the net to give the Falcons the only goal they would need on the night. Danvers moved some players to different positions than normal to counter how Swampscott was playing in the second half. Junior,Teagan Price moved from her normal defensive mid spot to left back and Ellie Anderson moved from wing forward to center mid.
"The goal Ari got was really nice and of course timely. The girls connected 3 quick passes before Ari's shot. That's something I'd like to see us do more. We've shown we can do it at practice and now it's a matter of playing that way in games. Teagan did a nice job defensively for us on the left side and Ellie really helped us in the middle of the field. Gabby Chisolm on defense and Ari and Reese Pszenny as attackers all played really well. On a night where our first touch was struggling, those girls really stepped up and gave us the boost we needed. Reese in particular had a very good game. She was able to hold the ball as we got numbers up offensively and I thought she really distributed well. Her skill level is amazing."
With the shut out victory, Danvers improved it's overall record to 7-0-1 on the season. The Falcons don't play again until next Saturday at Home, 5:00 vs. Peabody.