Three goals off corner kicks lift Fruita Monument to win

Fruita Monument’s Megan Hale collides with the Fountain-Fort Carson goalie Friday as they battle for the ball in the Wildcats’ 3-1 victory. Hale scored one of Fruita’s three goals, all of which came off corner kicks.

Practice really does make perfect.

That was especially true Friday for the Fruita Monument High School girls soccer team, which scored on three corner kicks in a 3-1 win over Fountain-Fort Carson at Canyon View Park.

“We’ve had so many corners this season, and we didn’t really finish any,” Fruita Monument coach Eric Anderson said. “So (Thursday) in practice we worked on corners for about 40 minutes, and I guess it paid off.”

Anderson said the focus of the practice session was to return to basics of the corner kick strategy.

“The girls don’t have to be afraid of the ball when it’s coming that far,” Anderson said. “They can put a leg or a head on it and we can score off of corners.”

The Wildcats (5-3-1, 2-1-1 Southwestern League) scored their first goal in the first minute on a corner kick from Rebecca Arotin that sophomore midfielder Megan Hale put away.

It was Hale’s fourth goal of the season.

“I’m good at getting balls out of the air on corner kicks,” Hale said. “It came right to me and I capitalized on it.”

Arotin contributed to the Wildcats’ next goal in the 22nd minute on a goal that Jamie Madson finished.

“Becca can put the ball in a dangerous position,” Anderson said. “We are excited to have a girl that can put the ball in the box and make it tough for other teams.”

The Wildcats seemed to have a comfortable 2-0 lead, but Fountain-Fort Carson responded in the 29th minute with a breakaway goal by Alicia Wilson.

Despite cutting the game to one goal, the Trojans didn’t have any serious runs at Fruita Monument goalie Kylie Goetz in the second half. Goetz finished with three saves.

Fruita Monument controlled the ball and put the game away during extra time.

Brisa Ruppe lined up a corner kick that Rachael Nock finished.

“We have to be able to finish,” Anderson said. “A corner is almost like a free shot on goal and by us finishing them, we can say we had four or five corners and we finished three, and that’s pretty good odds.”

The Wildcats finished with eight shots on goal.

The nonleague win was important for Fruita Monument, which was coming off of Tuesday’s 2-0 loss to Grand Junction.

“It was huge to get this win,” Anderson said. “The girls were happy with the way we played against Grand Junction, but still disappointed with the loss.”

The Wildcats have started to turn things around this season after finishing with one win in each of the past two years.

Fruita Monument has another nonleague game Tuesday at Delta.

“This has been a really exciting year for us,” Hale said. “It’s been a big turnaround.”


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