It may have been 14 years between sectional titles, but if you watched the North Adams girls soccer team on Tuesday night you’d think this was an occurance every year as the girls dominated Portsmouth West 11-0.
The team now moves onto a district semi-final at Waverly High School on Oct. 28 at 7 p.m. against third-seeded Alexander High School who defeated Fairland on Tuesday evening.
“This is their championship,” North Adams head coach Dave D’Avignon said after the win.
Seven Lady Devils scored as the reserves played the majority of the game against an overmatched opponent. Senior Cati Butler scored a hat trick while sophomore Lakyn Hupp scored two goals after missing a game due to injury.
Sophomore goalkeeper Madee Shipley recorded her eighth shutout this season, breaking her personal record of seven a year ago as she made six saves against Portsmouth West.
Hupp got the scoring started early when she scored off an assist from junior Allison Harper 90 seconds into the game. From there, junior Kitasha Mesmer added a header on an assist from sophomore Brooklyn Wylie while Wylie would add a goal of her own a minute later to make it 3-0. After Butler knocked one home, senior Brandi Waits scored off a pass from her little sister, sophomore Morgan Waits. Junior Jessica Wooddall closed out the scoring in the fist half with a long shot to give the Lady Devils a comfortable 6-0 halftime lead.
In the second half Hupp kicked off the scoring about five minutes in off another assist from the younger of the Waits sisters before Butler tallied her second about two minutes later. Sophomore Taylor Hessler added an unassissted goal about halfway through the second half before Butler earned her hat trick with 15:29 to play. Freshman Sarah Thatcher put the icing on the cake, scoring her first varsity goal about six minutes before the clock hit zero, prompting celebrations from the parents and team.
D’Avignon said he’s especially proud of this team since a few years ago the North Adams program was only winning a handful of games each season.
“It wasn’t too long ago that the shoe was on the other foot,” D’Avignon said. “When these seniors were freshmen they only won four games and in years before that they’d win two or three games. So this program and this team has come a long ways and the girls are really happy to win this sectional.”
D’Avignon said his team features a mixture of skilled players who also work hard, which he attributes to his team’s success this year.
“I kind of feel like Sparky Anderson,” D’Avignon said. “You give me good players and I’ll know what to do with them. Players in the past worked hard but these kids have some talent and they’ve worked hard to get that talent where it needs to be.”
Reach Charles Grove at 937-544-2391 or firstname.lastname@example.org.