MAPLE PARK – The Rosary girls soccer team, which has denied Kaneland a regional title in three of the past four years, could not reprise the spoiler role in the Knights’ first home match of the season Monday night.
Kaneland dominated the Royals the entire 80 minutes in a 3-0 nonconference victory.
“We’ve lost to them a lot in the regional championship, so this year we really wanted to beat them so we could set the tone for the beginning of the season,” said senior Brittany Olson, who scored all three Kaneland goals. “We played pretty well as a team, communicated, knocked the ball around and we were able to convert on our opportunities.”
“Half of the girls were gone during spring break last week so we didn’t even get to practice, and to do what we did today without practice says that we have a pretty good team,” Kaneland coach Scott Parillo said. “All of the goals we scored were off of rebounds and stuff like that because we were crashing the net and putting pressure on them.”
Olson scored her first goal 13 minutes into the contest on a header in front of the Rosary net. Three minutes later, the senior knocked in another goal off a pass from Courtney Diddell to give Kaneland a 2-0 lead at halftime.
A corner kick by Madison Jurcenko set up Kaneland’s third goal at the 20:35 mark of the second half. Rosary (0-3) goalkeeper Lauren Fransca deflected the attempt, the Knights gained control of the ball in front of the net and Olson booted it in.
Frasca, a senior, had 14 saves.
“Lauren does a fantastic job. She keeps us in the game and keeps everything going,” Rosary coach Brian Frank said. “She’s one of our few seniors and a team captain.”
An earlier second-half goal by the Knights was disallowed by an offside call.
Kaneland (1-1) missed an opportunity to increase its lead to 4-0 when it was unable to score on a penalty kick with 19:28 left in the game. Jurcenko’s shot went to right of the post.
“We knocked in three and we probably should have had more,” Parillo said. “We missed the PK and had another one called back because of offsides, but we had another three or four scoring opportunities.”
Most of the match’s action took place on Rosary’s side of the pitch as the team was unable to get any offense going.
“We lost nine seniors to graduation. Over half our starting lineup is brand new,” Frank said. “We had a lot of great individual efforts, but we need to work better as a team.”
“That’s our style, maintaining possession of the ball,” Parillo said. “Eventually, we’ll find weaknesses in the defense, get a few cracks at the goal and put a couple of them in. That worked for us today.”
Knights goalkeeper Emily Chapman had nine saves.