Ellie scored a hat trick Sunday morning against the toughest team in her grouping at the Icebreaker Invitational this weekend. Scoring three goals in a game is a rarity, even at the level Ellie plays on. These young girls are good.
The U-10 select squad she’s joined is still pretty new to each other. They played a Beach squad to a 2-2 tie on Saturday morning. In the afternoon, they played their worst game, seeming not to trust each other yet and not passing, and lost 0-1. Though luck played a huge role in that game as numerous scoring chances went off the goal post or just a breath wide.
Sunday morning they played like an entirely different team. They passed. They defended with tenacity. The Beach squad they were playing had romped through its first two games, winning 4-0 and 6-3. They were a pressing team, frequently bringing their defenders up to the midline, and they paid for it. Ellie drew first blood scoring on a nice crossing pass on a fast-break play with two other teammates. They simply outnumbered the defenders and passed well.
Her team took a 3-1 lead into halftime. Early in the second half, Ellie scored again on another cross in heavy traffic after the goalie missed the ball. She was right where she needed to be and redirected the ball into the net. A while later, Ellie forgot she wasn’t playing goalie and grabbed a corner kick as it came through. She immediately dropped it, but it was too late. The other team had a penalty kick. Fortunately it clanged off the top-bar.
A moment later her goalie scooped up the ball and hurled it downfield and over much of the other team. Ellie turned on the jets and beat the defender to the ball and suddenly was in a breakaway one-on-one with the other goalie. A quick feint and Ellie was past her with nothing but wide-open net in front of her. Three!
Unfortunately the other team kept pressing and suddenly scored goals in bunches and Ellie’s team lost by a heartbreaking 5-6 score. Still she and her team played great looking soccer and can be proud of it.
After the game, we took the girls down to the Dismal Swamp Canal bike trail, ate a quick picnic and rode a few miles. Audrey rode with Michele. Ellie rode her new road bike for the first time and loved how fast she could go on it. Millie toughed out four miles on her 16″ wheel bike, smiling the whole time, though she said she was ready to go to sleep toward the end.