Downingtown West shuts out Henderson in key National Division game

West Chester – Like most twins, Siena and Tessa Veurink – juniors on the Downingtown West girls soccer team — have spent most of their lives doing many of the same things.

On a misty Monday evening at West Chester Henderson’s Schramm field, the sisters shared a rare first-time experience, and their timing could hardly have been better.

Both Veurink sisters scored a goal for the first time in their careers, sandwiching strikes around two more goals from standout senior Amanda Tredway to spark Downingtown West to a 4-0 victory in a critical Ches-Mont National Division clash.

With the win, the Whippets (6-1-1 league) gained some separation on the host Warriors (5-3 league) and stayed one point behind Downingtown East in the race for a league title. The first-place Cougars (6-0-2 league) were 3-0 victors over visiting Oxford on Monday.

“It was a good team win,’ Downingtown West head coach Wes Davis said. “It’s always great to keep a zero on the board. We got goals from a few different girls, a few different lines, and we played a good team game.’

A light rain fell until just before kickoff, prompting a rainbow to appear above Schramm Field. From the opening kick, it was Downingtown West that made its own luck, scoring four times on only seven shots to pull away.

Siena Veurink started the fireworks midway through the first half on an opportunistic defense-to-offense sequence, stripping a Henderson defender at midfield and powering her way through two more Warriors to get in on goal. Alone in the box, she calmly fired a right-footed shot past diving junior goaltender Jenna Maratea and into the left corner of the net for a 1-0 Whippet advantage with 22:30 to play in the first period.

“I just tried to get through the defenders as fast as I could,’ Siena Veurink said. “I was able to break through and find the corner of the goal. When you’re one-on-one with the keeper, you can’t really think about it; you just have to finish it.’

The score stayed that way until early in the second half, when Tredway directed a bouncing shot from the left corner of the box into the right corner of the net to give West a 2-0 lead with 31:31 to play. Fourteen minutes later, she was at it again, blasting a one-timer past Maratea from five yards outside the box to make it 3-0. Tredway netted four goals in a 7-0 rout of Coatesville two weeks ago, and has developed into one of the area’s premier attacking threats.

“She’s turned into a good scorer,’ Davis said, perhaps understating slightly. “She’s got speed, she’s strong, and when she gets a hold of a ball, not many are going to stop her. We’re happy to have her.’Three minutes later came history for the Veurink family, when Tessa rocketed a 30-yard free kick through the hands of Maratea and into the back of the net with 16:37 to play to provide the final margin. Asked if she ever thought both Veurink twins would ever score in the same game, Siena’s answer was a clear “no.’

“I was really happy for her,’ Siena said of her sister, who was serenaded with chants of her name by the Whippets’ JV squad after her remarkable strike.

With Monday’s setback, the Warriors remained stuck on 15 points and in fourth place in the loaded National Division, three points behind the Whippets and West Chester East and four back of Downingtown East.

Senior captain Jessica Yanez made two saves to preserve the shutout, but was largely untested thanks to the stout defending of a backline anchored by seniors Devan Obendorfer and Maddie Kuciapinski and juniors Maddie Grim and Tessa Veurink. Yanez was called into action early in the second half, when she blocked a powerful blast from Henderson sophomore Sydney Zandi. The Warriors managed just six shots on the night, only two of them on goal.

“Our defense was great today, really solid,’ said Siena Veurink. “This was a huge win for us. We’re just going to keep on working really hard.’

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