STREATOR — With both the Streator and Ottawa girls soccer teams coming off ties in their respective season openers in less-than-ideal cold conditions, Wednesday afternoon's weather lessened a bit, while also giving the clubs a chance to put a mark under the win column for the first time in 2018.
The Lady Bulldogs did just that as they scored the match's opening goal in just over two minutes, added a second tally eight minutes later and found the back of the net four more times on the way to a 6-0 victory over the Lady Pirates here at the Streator YMCA.
"Playing Morris on Monday in the bitter cold was demotivating, but I knew fundamentally what we needed to do," said Streator coach J.T. Huey, his club now 1-0-1 on the season. "The mechanics today were exactly what I asked for. Ottawa was playing a tight three defense and the girls did a great job of taking the ball to the corner and crossing it inside. We didn't score against Morris, so I think once we saw the ball go to the back of the net today we realize 'Hey, we can do this ... we can play.' "
Streator junior Alyssa Eutsey got her club off to the great start by scoring on a 25-yard shot from the left wing off assists from sophomore Shannon Paton and senior Ashley McCurdy with only 2 minutes, 2 seconds in.
"We have some growing to do. I knew coming into this season that we have talent, but it might take some time for us to play as a team," said Ottawa coach Sean Porter, his club now 0-1-1 and was outshot 23-4 overall and 14-2 on goal for the contest. "I didn't see a whole lot of attack from us today. We just came out really unprepared and I'll take some of the blame for that, but on the other hand we needed this. If your going to come out with the attitude that you'll going to win games because you played well in the gym and it's going to translate out here on the field your just wrong.
"Streator is a very disciplined and strong ... they play with a ton of confidence and as a 11-girl team. We just aren't playing 11-girl soccer right now, but today was a good teachable moment and we'll see how we respond."
Streator scored a trio of times in the second 40 minutes, starting early on with Hannah Schmitz's blast from 15 yards straight on off a Goerne's second assist of the game. With 15 minutes remaining, Haylee Bruce converted a direct kick from the left wing and, in the final two minutes, Dean netted a penalty kick low-left past Ottawa senior keeper Addie McCorkle (two saves), who had replaced starting sophomore Tanlee Eich (six saves) 10 minutes into the latter half.
"I was happy from a coach standpoint to see us put in six goals against out rival, but we still have a lot of work to do," said Huey. "Teams, especially when the conference season comes around, are going to be coming after us after last year. The bullseye is on our backs, so we need to come out strong every match like we did today."