Each time Asia Ungard hit the ground in Tuesday's PIAA Class A girls first round soccer game, she got up a little slower.
Each time looked like more of a struggle to get up, because the Loyalsock senior gave everything she had in the contest. Ungard also knew that with each hit the Lancers' chances were growing slimmer.
Loyalsock pressured Mountain View throughout the night, but couldn't find an equalizer as the District 2 winner held on for a 1-0 win.
Nicole Dougherty of Loyalsock looks on as Mountain View players celebrate their win to start the PIAA?girls soccer playoffs Tuesday at Balls Mills.
"Mountain View had a game plan," Loyalsock coach Ben Comfort said. "They were going to keep the game as close as they could until they punched a goal in. Once they did that they packed in the defense and it was a struggle for us."
Morgan Chambers nearly gave Loyalsock its breakthrough goal when she beat a defender in the box and sent a curling shot toward the net. The curving shot, which was Loyalsock's best chance at scoring, was stuffed by Caity Tauge, who stopped eight shots on the night.
The Lancers controlled possession throughout the second half and sent four of their five shots on goal. Nicole Dougherty sent a quality attempt from outside the 18-yard box, which was stopped and controlled before Allie Pagana could tap the ball in for a goal.
"There were times when we worked hard and there were times when didn't work hard at all," Comfort said. "You have to play a full 80 minutes to win and we didn't do that tonight."
In the first half, Loyalsock's normally sharp play, which helped win the school its third consecutive district 4 title, wasn't there. Passes that were normally connected through the midfield went rolling by to empty spots as the Lancers offense attempted to build an attack.
"We never got into a rhythm," Comfort said. "No matter what a team throws at us we're good enough and capable of beating them. Tonight we didn't do that."
Once it seemed the Lancers were able to start building an offensive attack, Karlee Weida took a Jenny Molenko feed and pushed through for a one-goal advantage midway through the first half.
Once Mountain View received the first-half goal from Weida it hunkered down on the back line with five defenders. That was enough for a team which opened last year's PIAA playoffs by dropping its opening round contest 5-0 to Loyalsock,
"Loyalsock is fantastic," Mountain View coach Errol Mannick said. "We knew that if we played hard we could give ourselves a chance and that's what we did tonight. To me this is one of the top teams in the state and tonight I hoped we proved we can play with teams like that."
After the game's decisive goal was scored it was all Loyalsock as the offense refocused and pressured Mt. View. But, much like Ungard's pace to get up, the Lancers slowly started to fizzle as the realization of the end hit.
MV-Karlee Weida (Jenny Molenko), 29:29.
Shots: MV 4 L 14. Shots on goal: MV 4 L 8. Corners: MV 3 L 2. Saves: MV (Caity Tague) 8 L (Amanda Daneker) 3. Fouls: MV 6 L 5. Cards: MV none. L none.