Repeating as a league champion is a difficult task.
For the Dallastown girls’ soccer program, this season’s attempt at accomplishing that feat has seen its fair share of obstacles.
Like most teams toward the end of a season, injuries are piling up for the Wildcats. With a roster that only features four seniors, the Wildcats have been forced to utilize the services of a number of underclassmen.
One of the younger players stepping up this year is sophomore defender Lillian Jamison. It was her efforts that stood out on the score sheet when the Wildcats claimed a crucial 2-0 victory against Spring Grove on Tuesday afternoon.
“This game, I was confident, even with several starters out,” Dallastown head coach Scott Austin said. “I thought we should be able to take care of this game and we did. We’re just trying to make sure we stay on top of (York-Adams Division I).”
The victory came as Dallastown played host to its annual Pink Out game. The Wildcats donned pink jerseys, while coaches and fans wore special shirts that were for sale. Proceeds from the game helped WellSpan’s Cancer Patient Help Fund.
The win also keeps the Wildcats (9-6-0) atop the D-I standings at 7-2-0, tied with Northeastern.
It was also important because Dallastown bounced back from a difficult 3-2 setback at Northeastern on Saturday that tightened the division race.
Jamison’s efforts Tuesday began paying off late in the first half when she was able to draw a foul inside the box while contesting a header with 52 seconds remaining. Skyler Wilt took the resulting penalty kick and fired a shot past Rockets keeper Carlie Marquette into the lower-right corner.
Wilt would return the favor in the second half, assisting on Jamison’s goal with five minutes to play, which cemented the outcome.
“A ball came to Skyler and she gave me the perfect ball down the line,” Jamison said. “And I just took a couple dribbles and buried it in the side netting.”
The Rockets were able to hold the Wildcats' attack at bay early, and even held an advantage in corners at 3-1, until a pair of corners late in the first half evened that margin and helped lead to the first Dallastown goal.
For the match, the two sides were even in corners at five each. The Wildcats posted a 10-8 edge in shot.
Allison Hameier needed five saves to record the shut out. Marquette stopped five shots as well.
“Quick speed of play, we’ve been working on that a lot in practice,” Wilt said, offering it as as a reason for her team’s success. “We have three starters injured right now, so we had a freshman starting today. Working for each other is definitely what they’ve been doing and it’s worked. It’s been great.”
Another area where Dallastown was helped by its youth was on defense. The unit was able to produce the team's seventh shutout of the season, despite being down starters Natalie Gettle and Hannah Larson.
“Its games like these, that you look around and go, ‘We’ve got some girls that are out.’ And that’s where some JV girls step up, and that’s very important for us,” Austin said.
Next up for the Wildcats is a trip to New Oxford on Thursday. The Rockets host Red Lion that same day.
Northeastern 5, New Oxford 2: At Manchester, Brittany Arentz notched her second hat trick in as many games for Northeastern. Arentz also scored three goals in a key win Saturday against Dallastown. Amanda Bentz recorded a goal and an assist for Northeastern and Chaney Golden scored a goal as well for the Bobcats.
York Catholic 9, Bermudian Springs 1: At York Springs, the Fighting Irish routed the Eagles behind a five-goal first half. York Catholic’s Courtney Nattans had three goals and an assist, while MaCayla Welsh added two goals and two assists.
Dover 4, Kennard-Dale 2: At Dover, the Eagles scored twice in the second half to break a 2-2 halftime deadlock. Kylie Firestone scored once in each half to record a two-goal game for Dover, while Tracey Malone and Libby McKeever had a goal apiece. Madison Warfield scored both goals for K-D in the first half.
Harrisburg Christian 6, Christian School of York 3: At Christian School of York, Kendis Butler led the Crusaders with two goals and one assist. Teammate Mekenzie Smith scored one goal and added one assist.
Red Lion 3, South Western 1: At Red Lion, the home team grabbed the win. No other details were reported.
Susquehannock 4, West York 0: At West York, the visitors came away with the win. No other details were reported.
Dover 3, Kennard-Dale 2 (OT): At Fawn Grove, Cole Wentz scored right at the start of the first extra frame to give the Eagles the hard-fought overtime road win vs. the Rams. Travis Hill had a goal and assist for Dover, while Zach Leto scored in the second half for the Eagles to help them erase a 2-1 halftime deficit. Chance Logue and Craig Potts scored first-half goals for K-D.
Susquehannock 4, West York 0: At Glen Rock, the Warriors scored a pair of goals in each half. Colton Mumley had two goals, while Jason Weger had a goal and an assist and Joe Lippy also scored a goal.
York Catholic 3, Bermudian Springs 1: At York, Nick Bartkowiak scored a pair of goals to lead the Fighting Irish. Alan Figueira had the other Irish goal, while Seth Falvey and Bill Walker provided assists.
New Oxford 6, Northeastern 1: At New Oxford, the Colonials scored four times in the first half to cruise past the Bobcats. New Oxford out-shot Northeastern, 12-2.
Dallastown 3, Spring Grove 0: At Spring Grove, the Wildcats blanked the Rockets. No other details were reported.
Red Lion 2, South Western 0: At Hanover, the Lions shut out the Mustangs. No other details were reported.
Reach Elijah Armold at email@example.com.