Kickers knock down three foes

By Wendi Reardon Price
Staff Writer
— It was a good beginning to the weekend on Saturday morning for the Clarkston Girls Varsity Soccer team as they finished their home game against Ann Arbor Huron with a 3-0 shutout.
“Today was a good chance to reward some of the players who maybe have not had as much time,” said Damian Huffer, head coach for the Wolves. “We’ve got 26 great kids who turn up to practice and work hard. It was a chance to rotate a few people, get people in and the whole team a chance to play. We played everybody. We got a few bruised up so it was a good chance to rest up those players as well for a big game against Troy Athens.”
Senior Emma Bradley scored the first goal with 16:10 left in the first half. Thirteen minutes later, sophomore Emilia Cantinella scored one more with an assist from senior Avery Perkins.
“We got some good goals,” said Huffer. “We got into a fairly controlled game. We had a sloppy first 15-20 minutes for whatever reason, but as soon as they started to play after that it was fairly controlled. It was a good exercise, a good workout and good chance to play some of the bench players.”
Perkins finished the day with the third goal with 2:22 left in the game, off an assist from junior Brooke Ratcliff.
During the shutout, senior Izzy Shaw was in the net during the first half and sophomore Avery Eastman during the second half.
The Wolves gave Berkley their first loss of the season with a 3-1 victory.
“It was a good win,” Huffer said, adding the win puts Clarkston 4-0 in the OAA White League. “It was a bit of a battle. The second half was more physical than I was expecting, but they responded well.”
Clarkston opened last week with a 2-1 win over Lake Orion, April 23, with goals from Bradley and Perkins.
The Wolves (8-2-1) host Troy Athens on Thursday at Clarkston High School Stadium.
“They are one of the best teams in the state,” Huffer said. “We have a few days to prepare for them which will be a big test. It’s something I am looking forward to – if you want to beat the best, you have to play the best. They are always one of the top teams. It’s a really good benchmark to see where you stand in the Division 1 mix.”
He added it will get the players ready for the post-season, which begins with districts playoffs starting May 22.
“The last couple of years I tried to make the schedule as many OAA Red division teams as possible because the OAA Red is one of the best divisions in the state,” Huffer said. “As we wrap up, we want to play as many as these good games as possible. It puts us in a good spot. It’s a test, but it’s something we should look forward to. We always try to mix it up with good competition. Some at the end of season to get an idea of what we need to work on.”
Clarkston hosts Birmingham Seaholm on Tuesday, May 7 at the Pond. For both nights, JV plays at 5:30 p.m., varsity follows.

Sophomore midfielder Ashley DeHesselle runs the ball into Ann Arbor Huron’s offensive zone in the first half of last Saturday’s game. Photo: Wendi Reardon Price

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