DAYTON — On a day where both teams were battling the heat, the Bellbrook Golden Eagles were able to keep their cool in a 1-0 win over the Patriots, Saturday at Carroll High School.
With temperatures reaching the 90s, both teams had to worry about playing with high intensity in the sun. First-year Bellbrook coach Zach Huffman said he was happy with how his team performed.
“I think it’s been our best game by far this season,” he said. “First game versus Monroe was a tough game. We had a really good first 10 minutes, and then they scored on us and our heads went down a little bit. This game was high intensity the entire game. We were playing how we know we can play.”
Carroll coach Sarah Flach also gave Bellbrook credit.
“They just played harder than us. They made good on their opportunities and capitalized when they needed to. They deserve that win.”
Both teams battled for possession early, but it was Bellbrook sophomore Audrey Spirk who put her team ahead. With 7:49 remaining in the first half, she took advantage of the assist from Maleah Miracle and put the ball in the net.
Bellbrook goalie Bekah Vine unofficially had seven saves on the day. Huffman said that she was a difference maker in the game.
“She had a couple great saves. In the first half, she tipped one over the bar. She’s huge for us. You’re not a good soccer team unless you have somebody good in the goal. That’s why we’re a good soccer team, because of Bekah.”
After a couple close wins earlier this week, Flach said that this game served as a bit of a reality check.
“We’re taking away that we need to get down and focus. We had a really big week this week with games against Beavercreek and (Hamilton) Badin. I think we came into this game feeling good about ourselves,” she said. “Now I think we learned the lesson that nobody is going to hand you the win. You have to go out and play. Early in the season, maybe that’s a good lesson to have.”
Both coaches said the heat played a factor in the match.
“We had a couple girls get sick back here,” said Huffman. “Luckily, there was some shade that we could cool off under. Keeping the intensity up was tough. I would say that it dropped a little bit throughout the game. But overall, I couldn’t have asked for anything else.”
“It is hot, but it’s just as hot as them. You hate to say heat had anything to do with it when they’re in it too. We’re definitely not used to this heat, but we should be able to play through that,” said Flach.