(4/29) Mauldin 3-1 Riverside

     The Mavericks showed tonight what they are made of.  The girls displayed their skill, determination, conditioning and character in their convincing overtime win at Riverside.  The first half was a tug of war with both sides looking for a way through the back fours.  Mauldin chose to win balls in the air and push forward on the ground while Riverside mostly played balls over the heads of the Mavs.  The first serious threat on goal came from the spot as Riverside converted a penalty kick in the 28th minute.  The aggressive play continued with the Warriors picking up the first of their three yellow cards on the evening.  The Mav defense tightened up their marking and limited Riverside to long range efforts and lazy corner kicks.  Caitland Considine was steady in goal with sure hands and good decisions.  The midfield picked up their pressure on the ball and effectively shut down the Riverside attack.

     Coach Czar’s halftime talk did the trick as the Mavs came out with purpose in the second half.  The gals were much more comfortable on the ball, both in their challenges and their touches.  The Mavs gradually asserted themselves and took over control of the match.  Gina Cardenas put a couple free kicks on the Warrior doorstep.  Gracie Boswell flicked on to Lauren Young who forced an excellent save from the keeper.  Ali Simpson took a snap shot from the corner of the box that forced a finger tip save.  As the shots mounted, even the announcer seemed to tire from calling the keeper’s name so often.  In the 58th minute the Mavs equalized.  After a yellow card foul, Sarah Tuggle sent the free kick to the spot where the ball was headed to the right post.  The keeper could not handle the clearance and the ball and keeper fell to the feet of three Mavs.  Ali Simpson poked the ball in the right corner to level the match. 

     The Mavs came out with a bang to start the overtime.  Lauren sent the opening kickoff deep into the corner.  Maggie Cowley hustled after it and played the ball off the Riverside defender for a corner.  Sarah Tuggle served a beautiful ball to the spot where Gina Cardenas headed the ball down and home for the goal with only 26 seconds played.  The Mavs did not let up and kept the Warriors under constant pressure, limiting them to two 30 meter shots and a couple corner kicks.  In the second overtime Mauldin dominated play and were rewarded with a minute to play.  Caitland played a long ball out of the back where Gracie flicked the ball across the field to Maggie, streaking down the left side.  Maggie took one touch and played a long looping shot toward goal.  The Riverside keeper mishandled the ball and the rebound came out to Gracie who hit it first time from the top of the box to secure the amazing win.  The girls should be very proud of their effort tonight.  They showed everyone that The Mavericks are for real.