Tuesday’s William Chrisman-Van Horn girls soccer match came down to passion for playing the game – and a lack thereof.

Tuesday’s William Chrisman-Van Horn girls soccer match came down to passion for playing the game – and a lack thereof.

Chrisman played the first half at Independence All-School Stadium without any energy, Bears forward Michelle Blubaugh and coach John Straub agreed. But the Bears found their energy the second half and used it to win 5-2 and improve to 5-8.

“I think the second half it was a very enjoyable game, not only to be part of, but just to be able to watch,” Straub said. “The girls were doing a lot of really good things.”

The second half, the Bears were “much more solid” defensively, which helped them with their ball control, Straub observed. Moreover, the team was “better at pressuring quickly, especially forwards and midfielders,” Blubaugh noticed.

By contrast, the Falcons (6-9) never found their passion for playing, Van Horn coach Chris Corrie said. And according to Corrie, playing with a passion for soccer is key for the Falcons.

“We’re never going to be the best team at passing, of playing a really nice possession game,” he said. “That’s not us. And so, we’ve got to fly all over the field, make plays, win loose balls, and we didn’t do that today.”

Although both teams felt flat the first half, they found enough energy to score a goal apiece. Van Horn took the lead when Camilla Neumann finished a ground-hugging shot in the 30th minute. Alyssa Kyle floated in a free kick in the 40th minute to tie it at halftime.

Corrie said it was miraculous the score was 1-1 at halftime.

“We played a horrible first half,” he said. “It would’ve been a gift for us to come in at the end of the first half up 1-0. It would’ve been a gift from the soccer gods.”

Blubaugh said that Kyle’s late equalizing goal gave the Bears “a little energy boost.”
“We always do better after we score a goal,” she said.

Chrisman’s “energy boost” started paying off when Blubaugh scored early in the second half to put the Bears ahead. Amanda Olsen’s goal in the 56th minute made it 3-1 Chrisman. Blubaugh followed that by scoring in the 58th minute.

“It was a serve in,” Blubaugh recalled. “I stayed back a little bit and the center forward went forward a little bit. It was just an easy kick right into the goal.”

Kyle finished a penalty kick in the 59th minute for Chrisman’s final goal. Hoping to help motivate her team, sophomore forward Destiny Marquez scored Van Horn’s final goal in the 74th minute.

“I just saw the ball, open air and I just shot,” Marquez said. “And I scored.”

Marquez agreed with Corrie that the Falcons lacked their collective passion for soccer Tuesday.

“We didn’t have our minds straight for the game, because we play hard,” she said. “This is not as hard as we can play.”