Fluco girls soccer falls to Black Knights 2-0

Duncan Nixon

The Fluvanna girls soccer team hosted the Black Knights from Charlottesville High on April 25. The Flucos were hoping to avenge an early season 1-0 loss at Charlottesville, but it was not to be. In the middle of the first half, the Fluco’s senior midfielder Reese Matula fired a vicious free kick from about thirty yards out that was only inches too high. It hit the goal cross bar and bounded back out. Almost immediately thereafter, the Black Knights fired an equally vicious long shot at the Fluvanna goal and it was just low enough, by inches, to go below the cross bar and into the Fluvanna goal. In virtually all sports a matter of inches can determine the outcome.  

The two squads battled evenly for the rest of the half, as they had before the Charlottesville goal. Goals in soccer are hard to come by when two evenly matched teams are competing with equal intensity.

Early in the second half, the Black Knights had a header that hit the cross bar and it bounced out. Shortly thereafter, Fluvanna goalie, senior Vaile Altherr, made a very nice save to turn back a strong scoring opportunity for the Black Knights. Five minutes later it was the other way around as the Charlottesville goalie grabbed and held on to a high floater just in time to prevent an attacking Fluco from getting to the ball. In the ensuing collision, the goalie held the ball and the Flucos were stymied again. 

As time started to wind down, Fluco Coach Kat Hinkle made a move she hoped would lead to a tying goal. She explained after the game that she moved junior defender Piper LaRochelle forward to midfield. Hinkle described La Rochelle as “the heart of the team.” She has been a stand-out since her freshman season. Unfortunately, the move failed to accomplish its hoped-for result. With the Fluco defense weakened by the loss of LaRochelle, the Black Knights were able to score a second and decisive goal with eight minutes remaining in the game.  Hinkle was philosophical about this development, noting that there is not much difference between a 1-0 loss and a 2-0 loss.

After the game, Hinkle was not discouraged, commenting that she thought that her team might have turned in its strongest performance of the season. She cited Matula and senior forward Maddie Daidone for strong play. Sophomore Kennedy Yowell and senior Abigail Ford also made important contributions. A promising newcomer who showed impressive speed was freshman Carolina Thomas.

On April 29, the Flucos traveled to Albemarle High. On May 2, they will host Western Albemarle. On May 6 they are at Orange County and on May 9 they host Louisa County.

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