Waubonsie Valley battles elements to blank Neuqua

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Having waited through two consecutive 30-minute delays due to lightning was worth the wait according to Waubonsie Valley as the Sun-Times’ No. 8-ranked squad posted a 3-0 shutout over No. 4 Neuqua Valley.

Both teams entered the Upstate Eight Conference Valley Division showdown looking to continue successful runs following hard-fought weekend ties. Since losing its season opener, Waubonsie Valley extended its string of unbeaten matches to eight straight (7-0-1) in order to improve to 7-1-1 overall and 3-0 in league play.

Neuqua Valley, which also lost its season opener, had a run of six without a setback ended as the visiting Wildcats dipped to 5-2-1 and 1-1-0 for conference play.

“We haven’t beaten Neuqua since my freshman year, so this is really great,” explained senior co-captain Karla DiJohn. “Scoring in a big game like this is that much more exciting. At half (coach Julie) Bergstrom told me to find open space and that’s what I was doing so that I could finish off a great cross.”

Despite the constant rain, Waubonsie Valley negotiated the wet field better in grabbing a 1-0 lead 10:58 into the contest when Morgan Kemerling’s through ball enabled Kristen Dodson to blast a 16-yarder past Wildcat goalie Hannah Parish’s grasp and into the net.

Just 7:31 into the second half, freshman Paige Filipek drilled a shot that Parrish initially blocked only to have DiJohn park the rebound.

Four minutes later, Fillipek netted her fourth goal of the season with a 25-yard rocket.

“I saw an opening and chose to take a hard shot hoping for either a goal or another rebound opportunity for a teammate,” Filipek said. “It’s so important for us to beat the Naperville area teams not just for bragging rights, but for post-season seeding.”

Emma Rigby chalked up her second solo shutout in addition to sharing two other clean sheets for the Warriors.

“They out played us, outhustled us and certainly proved to be the better team tonight,” Neuqua coach Joe Moreau admitted. “I thought Lauren Ciesla’s play of the bench was a bright spot for us.”

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