VGS vs. Concord Academy: CA Penguins-4; CA Chameleons-1

Cushing Academy - 4
Concord Academy - 1
The Cushing Varsity Girls’ Soccer team welcomed the Chameleons of Concord Academy to Quimby Field on a rainy and windy Thursday October afternoon. The Penguins were looking to keep the momentum of their win against the Tilton Rams going and push themselves to a better performance on this afternoon.
The Cushing squad came out strong with Caroline Lilley ‘23 putting balls into the Chameleons' box for Lily Stone’s '22 feet before a minute had passed and this was complemented by a long shot to goal from Ava Alioto '21. The Penguin offensive unit was working hard creating opportunities to score with great ball movement and team communication. The Lilley and Erin Rutherford '21 combo thrived with creating danger in the visitor's box. Heading, controlling, crossing balls to each other or other teammates, working the sidelines to find space for runs which lead to a clear opportunity with a great run from Lilley and a ball put into box for Stone that ended as an indirect kick the Penguins couldn't connect into the net. 
A dangerous counter-attack had tri-captain Jenna Viglione ‘20 hustling to outrun the Concord attacker and clear the ball. The Penguin backline was fiercely defended by tri-captain Zoe Wilcox '20, who's always ready to put her head in the game and reject airballs back into the offensive zone, hustle against attackers to recover balls and step in to get first touch. In the net was Ashley Reid ‘20, who was ready for coming out and securing balls before they became a threat, despite letting one up to the Chameleons prior to the half. 
The Penguins' offensive momentum never slowed and it started on the backline as Jamie Ryan '23 and Natasha Shade '20 comboed together to recover balls and put them back into the offensive zone. A ball crossed to box by Lilley was met by Alioto's foot after a great run, but unfortunately went over the net. Lily Corso '23 and Stone would work the sideline together with great runs to earn corners. Shade's attempt on goal was denied as her powerful shot from outside the box slipped past the Chameleon keeper, but was saved by the post for a cleared rebound. Lilley and Rutherford's combo would step in 5 minutes before the end of the first half to help Corso find the tie with a ball through by Rutherford. A great long run and crossed ball by Lilley resulted in a clean finish by Corso. The Penguins would see a free kick going wide and several crosses and corners come up empty before the end of the first half. 
The Penguin opportunities multiplied in the second half as the Cushing attacks started quick with a crossed ball by Rutherford for Jane Harmon '22.  The second goal of the match for the Penguins started with a great throw-in by Alioto, excellent ball control and spacing taking by Corso to put the ball into the Chameleon box where it found Lilley's foot for a powerful clean finish. With the score in the home team’s favor at 2-1, the Penguins continued to work hard by running the sideline back and forward, protecting balls, creating opportunities to score, and hustling against counter-attacks by the Concord players. Stone picked up two goals on the day with the first coming after she squeezed through the Chameleon’s backline to slot a ball through to the back of the net from a difficult angle.  Her second came of her own creation as she pressured the Concord backline, stole the ball from a defender, made a quick run before placing the ball into the back of the Chameleon net to run the score to the final 4-1.
Throughout the second half, the Penguin backline was unbeatable with consistent performances by Wilcox and Viglione and net protection by Reid with great runs to come out and secure long balls when needed.
It was yet another exciting comeback victory for the Penguins and they have shown early on they are able to remain together, fight, and create ball play from start to finish. The team will remain home next Saturday, October 19th when they welcome the Pelican's of St. Paul's School for a game on Quimby Field.  The team is looking forward to the additional support from the home crowd as it will be the Penguins’ Family Weekend. Kickoff is scheduled for 5:00pm and they look to bring the energy of the past few victories to the field on Saturday.
Season Record to Date: 6-3-2

Cushing Academy

39 School Street
Ashburnham, Massachusetts 01430

Cushing Academy

Cushing Academy exists for students and develops curious, creative, and confident learners and leaders. Founded in 1865, Cushing is a co-ed, college preparatory boarding and day school for students in grades 9-12 and PG. Our students, who come from over 30 states and 30 countries, excel in our outstanding academic, art, and athletic offerings. We welcome you to visit our community and beautiful 162-acre campus in Ashburnham, Mass., just one hour from Boston, to experience all that Cushing has to offer.