Lansdale Catholic frustrated in 1-1 draw with Methacton

LANSDALE >> An early score by Kate Henesey seemed like a sign of more goals to come for the Lansdale Catholic girls soccer team Tuesday afternoon.

But whatever luck the Crusaders had on the sophomore’s tally vanished afterwards, as everything else they tried couldn’t find the back of Methacton’s net.

“I’m kind of upset but at the same time I’m frustrated,” Henesey said. “We all had tons of shots but they just weren’t going in.”

The visiting Warriors, meanwhile, got one chance and made it count as Kyra Hardenberg netted the equalizer in the second half. The teams went into overtime, but neither could break the deadlock and the non-league contest ended in a 1-1 draw.

“We had chances that didn’t go for us today and somehow when you’re a young player, you just have to keep your head up and keep plugging away, keep working,” Lansdale Catholic coach Tom O’Donnell said. “For the most part, I think the kids did, because we kept generating more chances, but it builds for everybody on the team, the frustration.”

Despite collecting her 16th goal of the season, Henesey was the at forefront of the Crusaders’ dejection. Twice she was denied by the crossbar, had a header denied at the post while another handful of shots were denied by Methacton keeper Elizabeth Stender.

“It makes me angry sometimes, but you have to push through it and keep cool and keep focusing,” Henesey said.

Stender finished with 11 saves for the Warriors (1-4-2, 1-3-0 PAC-10) who have gone 1-0-2 in the their last three after starting the season with four straight losses.

“Our first half was not the best first half in the world, to put it nicely,” Methacton coach Bret Smith said. “We didn’t play well. I thought the girls, to their credit, kind of battled back a little bit, started winning more of the 50/50 balls, little bit more of the air balls. We just still have an issue connecting passes.

“We did a better job defensively on their speed, they got a lot of speed up front. They were still serving some on dangerous balls, but I thought our centerbacks and our goalkeeper did a pretty good job of handling that.”

Lansdale Catholic (6-2-1, 5-0-0 Philadelphia Catholic League), which had scored at least two goals in all but one games — a 2-0 loss to Gwynedd Mercy on Sept. 12 — before Tuesday’s draw, is hoping its scoring luck is back Wednesday when it visits Archbishop Carroll for a PCL match at 3:30 p.m.

“We’re thinking, you know, if there’s a law of averages, we’ve now rung up this big debt on our side after today and everything,” O’Donnell said. “And I’d like to cash a few in next week, maybe one or two tomorrow against Carroll tomorrow because I want the three points and then next week with (Archbishop) Wood and (Archbishop) Ryan. This would be great to have some of these posts and near-misses cash them in. Is there a bank I can do that?”

Methacton returns to PAC-10 play 4 p.m Thursday as the Warriors visit Phoenixville.

“We’re three games in a row now without a loss. We won one and tied our last two. So, I’m hoping we can build some confidence from it,” Smith said. “We’ve got two tough league games coming up — Thursday night at Phoenixville and Friday at home against Upper Perk.”

Henesey was denied by the crossbar on her first chance Tuesday, but put LC up 1-0 on her next opportunity.

Hannah Shumate made a run down the right side, then delivered a cross into the 18-yard box. Stender could not get full control of the ball after Henesey touched it towards the net and had to bat the ball away from the goal line. Henesey regained possession, turned and fired a shot inside the near post.

“It took a lucky bounce out from the goalie,” Henesey. “I mean, I just turned and was open.”

In the second half, Henesey got a run at goal after a mishit by the Methacton backline, but her right-footed blast was blocked by Stender. Henesey later touched a cross from Sarah Opdyke just wide of the right post.

Hardenberg pulled Methacton level off an Maddie Taylor assist, with Hardenberg getting behind the LC defense and sending a low shot into the opposite corner.

“Kyra’s been battling back from an injury. She is still not at 100 percent yet since we started this season,” Smith said. “And she’s always been pretty opportunistic with her chances and she just got a little piece of it and that’s all she needed to do.”

Henesey came so close to giving LC back the leader as her header off a corner look destined to get inside the left post, but the knee of Mariah Romano kept the contest tied.

In the first overtime, Lansdale Catholic got a free kick just outside of the 18-yard box. Erin Toburen’s try was on-target, but Stender punched in the air before grabbing it. Jules LaSanta had a shot from in front, but pushed it over the crossbar.

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