Girls soccer: West Aurora wins Blackhawk Invite; Kaneland claims secondAndrea Garcia (top) of East Aurora and Kaneland goalkeeper Jordan Ginther collide as Ginther denies a chance for Garcia to score. | Jon Cunningham~For Sun-Times Media
Updated: April 11, 2012 9:23PM
In a consolation matchup of young squads, Kaneland posted a 3-0 shutout of East Aurora Wednesday to claim second in West Aurora’s Blackhawk Invitational, while the host school kept its own trophy with a 7-0 whitewash of Westminster Christian.
Kaneland grabbed momentum with an unassisted strike by Madi Jurcenko less than four minutes into the contest and owned a 2-0 halftime lead that meant the outcome stayed deceptively undecided as East Aurora often appeared another touch or pass away from making it a one-goal battle.
A late goal helped produce the final margin for the Knights, who evened their record at 3-3. East Aurora, which has already exceeded last season’s victory total, slipped to 3-5.
“Getting that early goal was very crucial because it sets us a step ahead,” said Jurcenko, who registered her third goal and second match-winner of the season. “I try to look for a shot because I know an early lead gives us so much more confidence.”
“That was huge,” Kaneland coach Scott Parillo said. “It set the tone for us and with us having to bring JV players up, it was that much better. Having the reserves step up like this to get us two shutouts in a row is a real plus.”
Momentum stayed with the Knights as Katie Taylor caromed a blast off the crossbar and then helped her side get a 2-0 edge with a stellar through ball to Melissa Bohorquez, who buried an 11-yarder from the left wing.
While Kaneland had the better scoring chances early, the second half featured much more back-and-forth with the Knight defense bending but not breaking. At the opposite end, East Aurora keeper Daisy Sanchez kept her net clean in the second half until the last two minutes when an Emily Eckert shot squeezed between her arm and body.
“Daisy deserved a lot of credit for keeping them from scoring more, especially in the second half,” East coach Matt Shirk said. “Very few people would believe she’s been a goalie for all of eight matches in her life. Falling behind early we played a little too much kickball in the first half, the second half was much more of a midfield battle. I give Kaneland’s defense credit; they kept our offense from getting the last touch or extra pass we needed to score. Overall I was still much more pleased with our second-half play.”
Not only has East Aurora surpassed last year’s two victories, the Tomcats’ 7-0 blanking of Westminster Christian earlier in the tournament gave them consecutive shutout wins for the first time since 2007.
“With my basketball background, the coaches believe I’ve got the hands to play goalie, so their confidence in me helps,” Sanchez said. “Compared to last year (when she was a field player), we’re a much better team with more talent, and I know we can add some more wins.”
West Aurora 7, Westminster 0
Danielle Bueno got West Aurora started with a goal in the opening 10 minutes of play and was one of six Blackhawks to help produce their highest single-game total for this year.
Jessica Saffell added two strikes to bring her team-best goal tally to eight for the season. The victory enabled West Aurora to level its season record at 5-5 and marks the first time the Blackhawks won their tourney outright since this year’s seniors were freshmen in 2009. West Aurora and Plainfield East were co-champions for the 2011 tournament.