SIDMAN — The Bald Eagle Area girls’ soccer team had its best season in the past decade come to a end on Nov. 9 with a PIAA, 2A quarterfinal loss to North Catholic, 5-0.
The team finished with a 20-2-1 record for the season and had its first winning campaign since 2009.
North Catholic jumped out quickly on the Lady Eagles, and at halftime, BEA found itself down 4-0.
“Their (the Lady Trojans) spacing was very good,” Moore said. “They were very patient and used their opportunities well.”
Moore said he was proud of his girls for the way they played in the second half, where they limited North Catholic to just one more tally.
“I thought the girls played well in the second half,” he said. “They put a lot of pressure on their defense.”
Bald Eagle Area won three corner kicks during the game, and had five shots on goal. Rachel Veneziano, BEA’s junior goalkeeper, stopped 16 of 21 North Catholic shots on goal.
Despite the PIAA quarterfinal round loss, Moore still called 2019 a “dream season.”
“We really wanted to be contenders in the Mountain League this year and we wanted to make playoffs,” Moore said. “We were one win short last year and it really was a sticking point for the girls in the offseason and preseason this year.”
He said they all worked extremely hard before the season and bought into a system that stressed playing as one unit rather than individually.
“I saw so many positive things happen with our program this year,” said Moore. “To get the experience of playoff soccer was so valuable moving forward with the program and the legacy that this team has set will be something to work toward each year. They set the bar high and I am incredibly proud of their accomplishments this year.”
That bar will first be tested by the now playoff-experienced underclassmen that will return to the team next season.
“I think we were able to get some of them playing time this year and they seem excited to begin offseason workouts,” he said. “They just love to play soccer and that makes my job so much easier.”
But, those underclassmen will need to do it on their own as seven seniors will graduate in June. Those graduating seniors are Addison Proctor, Emily Shiels, Allison Cowan, Zoey McHenry, Madelyn Bailey, Sierra Surovec and Sophia Dimitratos.
“We had great senior leadership this year,” Moore told The Centre County Gazette. “Quite a few were three- or four-year starters and will be sorely missed. All contributed to the season in one aspect or another.”
Freelance writer Mikey Kresovich contributed to this report.