By Dan Truttschel

Sports correspondent

Things are starting to jell for the Big Foot-Williams Bay girls soccer team.

The Chiefs picked up two more wins this past week, starting with an 8-1 thumping of visiting Edgerton on May 4, and ending with a hard-fought 1-0 decision Monday night at Whitewater.

Big Foot improved to 6-2 and 5-1 in the Rock Valley Conference with the two wins.

First-year head coach Rene Perez has been pleased with his team’s improvement.

“We have really come together as a team,” he said. “After that tough conference loss to McFarland (earlier in the season), the girls have started to play better each game. (We’ve had) great leadership from our three captains this season, (and) it’s helped us get through some tough games.”

Perez added that his team’s offense has also started to take off – to the tune of 34 goals scored – while the defense has allowed just nine.

“Our defense has played a big role on the attack as they push on the wings and present other teams with a scoring threat,” he said. “I was not sure how well we would be on the offensive end, but we have been playing well on that end, too.

“I’m extremely proud of how the five freshmen have been able to mature this season and really contribute to the team.”

Big Foot pulled out its 1-0 win over Whitewater with just 44 seconds left, as Abby Peterson scored off a misplayed ball by a Whippets’ defender.

“Abby was able to trap the ball and get the shot off as two defenders collapsed on her,” Perez said. “The keeper saw (it) at the last second, got her fingertips on it, but it was not enough as the ball hit the back of the net.”

And as has been the case, the Chiefs’ defense, led by goalie Enna Peterson’s five saves also was a key, Perez said.

Whitewater finished the match with six shots.

“Our defense really put pressure on the ball as they tried to attack us,” Perez said.

In the 8-1 win to open the week, Big Foot scored six second-half goals to blow things open.

Peterson led the way with two goals and an assists, followed by Meredith Heckert with two goals and Abby Van de Bogert, Maddie Palmer, Hannah Palmer and Mallory Beyers with one apiece. Penny Brooks had two assists.

“We played a little faster in the second half,” Perez said. “We finally got our game going, playing wide, then back in the middle. We controlled most of the midfield play and kept our attack on.”

Big Foot was back in action Thursday night with a key RVC matchup at Evansville, which entered play this week at 5-0 in conference play.

Now is the time for the Chiefs to peak, and Perez is encouraged to see that they may be doing just that.

“I want us to be playing our best soccer at this point as we get ready for playoffs,” he said. “(After Evansville), hopefully, (we will) still be contending for the conference title.”

 
 

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