MANCHESTER, NH – “Considering we started flat, this was one of the more complete games we played this year,” said Memorial Coach Nick Gardner. “We played in spurts early on and got better as the game went on. We had better position play.”
Still, it wasn’t enough as the Windham Jags earned a workmanlike 2-0 win over their home field Friday afternoon.
The loss was further felt by Memorial as play was stopped three times for injuries. It is hoped that they are minor. It looks like Alivia Wilkinson, injured several weeks ago, will be out the remainder of the season because of a concussion.
The discrepancies in shots on goal, 10 to 2 in the Jaguars favor, with corner kicks favoring the Jags again, 7 to 1, belie the fact that Memorial was able to keep the ball in the offensive zone longer than in any other game this year. A Crusader second-half goal was disallowed for a hand violation right in front of the goal off a free kick. Memorial also showed improved play in attacking the ball rather than waiting for an opponent’s mistake. This was most obvious with Crusader co-captain Payton Moran stripping the ball in a pair of one-on-one situations deep in the Crusaders’ side of the field.
The most impressive play of the afternoon was a 30-yard free kick by the Jags’ Addison Armstrong that was buried high in the net for Windham’s second goal, coming at the 17-minute mark of the second half.
“We’ve worked at getting free kicks off quicker,” Windham Coach Michael Lanza explained. “This is not the first time she’s scored on a free kick.”
“My hat is off to Memorial,” Lanza said. They played tough for 80 minutes. “
While a number of Windham opportunities wound up with shots either wide or high of goal, Memorial goalie Hannah Jenkins made several impressive saves off hard shots. Her best came at the 5-minute mark of the first half off a 20-yard free kick on goal which she caught.
Windham’s first goal came off a corner kick at the 8-minute mark of the first half. Emma Kendzulak converted a corner kick by Armstrong after a Memorial defender headed but didn’t clear the ball. Jenkins had no chance on this one.
Memorial’s next game is Tuesday night at Chabot-McDonough Field where they will host Nashua High North at 7 p.m.