The two biggest plays in the third meeting between Loyalsock and Southern Columbia won't make the box score. And the player who made the biggest plays won't appear their either.
That's the beauty of hustle. It's something that can't be measured by numbers.
And even though it can't be measured like most sports stats, it'd be hard to argue that Asia Ungard didn't bring more than the rest as No. 1 Loyalsock collided with No. 4 Southern Columbia.
CRAIG S. McKIBBEN JR./Sun-Gazette
Loyalsock’s Asia Ungard (16) and Southern Columbia’s Aly Stavinski chase down a loose ball during Wednesday’s District 4 Class A girls semifinal at the Balls Mills Soccer Complex. The Lancers defeated the Tigers, 1-0, and advanced to the District 4 Class A championship game for a third consecutive year. View additional photos at cu.sungazette.com
Ungard's hustle helped reset possession in the second half, and protect a first-half goal from Allie Pagana as Loyalsock defeated Southern Columbia, 1-0, at the Ball Mills Soccer Club. The win gives Loyalsock its third appearance in the District 4 Class A final in as many years. The Lancers will play No. 2 seed East Juniata.
"Any type of ball can give you any type of situation to put it in and score," Ungard said. "You have to capitalize on what you can get. Southern had some quality looks, but we had to be calm and do what we do best. Against a good team you never know what can happen, so you have to clear those balls."
Ungard's hustle nearly gave Loyalsock its second goal of the first half when a ball deflected off a Southern Columbia player at midfield. Ungard streaked down to the ball to earn a corner in the final two minutes of the half. Once she earned the team's fourth corner of the match, Ungard sent a perfect ball into the box to Morgan Chambers who nearly headed the ball in for a two-goal lead.
Ungard ran down a similar ball in the second half and gave Loyalsock a much needed break after a Southern Columbia surge through the opening 20 minutes.
"We had a lot of fire coming out into the first half," Chambers said. "We knew what was at stake."
Chambers played a sensational opening 40 minutes.
Southern Columbia struggled to move the ball past midfield, with Chambers' intercepting passes and keeping the pressure on the Tigers' backline.
"We play well defensively," Loyalsock coach Ben Comfort said. "We score when we need to, but overall defensively we're at the top. We played well to our strengths tonight."
The Lancers showed their strength in the first half with Chambers controlling the midfield and Ungard chasing down loose balls. The combination was too much for the Tigers.
The second half, though, belonged to Southern Columbia as five of its shots and three of its shots on goal came in the final 40 minutes.
"In the second half I'm not really sure what happened," Chambers said. "I think we just got a little to comfortable, but our defense came through."
The backline was tested throughout the second half. And when it wasn't able to stop Southern Columbia from getting through, Amanda Daneker was up for the challenge.
Loyalsock's four-year starter stopped three shots on goal in the second half and attacked corners by punching balls out of the box.
"Southern is a good team. They always come out strong in the second half," Daneker said. "I knew I had to be mentally prepared for that."
L-Allie Pagana (Lauren Raemore), 15:22.
Shots: L 5 SC 8. Shots on goal: L 2 SC 3. Corners: L 5 SC 6. Saves: L (Amanda Daneker) 3. SC (Jess Watkins) 1. Fouls: L 8 SC 8. Cards: L none. SC none.
Records: Loyalsock (19-2). Southern Columbia (15-6). Next: Loyalsock vs. East Juniata, District 4 Final, TBA.