Girls soccer, Oct. 17 -- Gazette.Net


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There are no more undefeated Montgomery County Public School teams.

Two-time state champion Quince Orchard handed Gaithersburg its first loss of the season Friday, 1-0. The win puts the Cougars in position to win their second straight Montgomery 4A West Division title.

Stephi Shin scored the game-winning goal with an assist from Sam Sullenger.

Quince Orchard will face Northwest on Thursday in a game with division title implications. The Cougars won last year’s match, 6-0.

Though slightly off last year’s pace of 50 regular-season goals — the Cougars have scored 22 in 10 games — Quince Orchard’s balanced offense has come through when its needed to.

Eight different players have scored, seven of them with multiple goals. Sullenger, Shin and Lauren Holdsworth lead the way with four goals apiece.

More importantly, the Cougars are stifling their opponents’ attack. Quince Orchard has given up only two goals to MCPS opponents and seems to be hitting its stride as it heads into the final stretch of the season toward playoffs.

“We’ve had the same thing going for a few years now where we have a lot of tough teams at the beginning and we always drop a few and then we kind of have to build our way back into the season. And that’s kind of what we’ve done again this year,” Cougars coach Peg Keiller said.

Over the hump: Sherwood put itself in position to win its first division title in at least four years with its first win against Montgomery 4A East rival Montgomery Blair in that time, 3-0.

Struggling Paint Branch and Kennedy are the only games left on Sherwood’s division schedule.

The Warriors now have won eight straight games.

“I think [the win against Blair] sent a message. We’ve kind of been a quiet team, quietly successful,” fourth-year Sherwood coach John Vukovich said.

The Warriors are largely reliant on University of Maryland recruit Hope Gouterman (11 goals, 23 assists).

Sherwood is no stranger to regular-season success. The Warriors only lost two games last season before losing in the first round of the Class 4A North Region tournament.

They have their sights set on a lengthier postseason campaign this fall, Vukovich said.

“This year we’ve changed a few things and the chemistry has been really big. I think it’s the flexibility of my players, I’ve got girls who can play...my forwards can play in the back and my sweeper can be a forward, so we’ve had them run a lot of overlaps and different combinations,” Vukovich said.

On a roll: Holy Cross got off to its best start in five years this fall and has not looked back.

The Tartans are undefeated in the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference — they played rival Our Lady of Good Counsel on Tuesday but results were unavailable at press time.

Six of Holy Cross’ 11 total wins have been shut outs. The Tartans have outscored their opponents 28-5 and have not allowed more than two goals in a single game.

jbeekman@gazette.net

How they rank

1. Good Counsel, 9-0-1

2. B-CC, 8-1

3. Holy Cross, 11-0

4. Whitman, 8-2

5. Churchill, 5-3-1

5. Quince Orchard, 7-3

Best bets

Bethesda-Chevy Chase at Whitman, 7 p.m. Wednesday

Northwest at Quince Orchard, 7 p.m. Thursday