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High school soccer: Hornets alone in first place

Staff report

LEXINGTON — Salisbury’s girls soccer team triumphed, 4-3, in a highly competitive Central Carolina Conference match at Central Davidson on Wednesday.

“It was an exhausting, physical affair that saw four cards issued and a plethora of whistles,” said Salisbury coach Matt Parrish, who got one of the cards himself. “I am really proud of our resiliency. It was the first time we’ve trailed all season and the first time a contest has come down to the wire.”

Salisbury (5-0, 4-0) ended the night alone in first place, a game up on Central Davidson, West Davidson and North Davidson.

West Davidson defeated North Davidson on Wednesday in a match that went to penalty kicks.

The Spartans (3-2-1, 3-1) scored less than two minutes into the match to set the tone for what would become a high-scoring affair. Salisbury leveled at 1-all six minutes later when Lillie Rusher found Piper Muire.

Salisbury took the lead for the fist time in the 16th minute when Sutton Webb found fellow freshman Sydney Hlavacek on the back post. Hlavacek volleyed the cross home for her first career goal.

Salisbury pushed the lead to 3-1 when Muire found a streaking Webb, who converted to score in her fifth consecutive match.

Central Davidson scored with less than six minutes left in the half to make it 3-2 at the break.

Neither team scored in the first 30 minutes of the second half.

Salisbury was whistled for a foul in the box and Central converted to tie the score at 3-all with just under nine minutes left.

Both teams tried desperately to push forward, but it was Salisbury that scored with the Rusher-to -Muire connection coming through again. They converted on a set piece with five minutes left.

Simply put, our learning curve is sharper than it was last year,” Parrish said.  “Girls are starting to understand their roles and what is expected of them positionally and personally. Sydney Hlavacek’s goal is a perfect example. She was in the right place at the right time and she and the team were rewarded as a result. That probably doesn’t happen two matches ago. Our outside backs, Clara Brown (who returned from injury and played a fantastic match) and Olivia Dagenhart were pivotal in a thankless position.”

Next up for the Hornets is a non-conference match Thursday against North Rowan at Ludwig Stadium. Game time is 6 p.m..

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