Washington Evening Journal
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Washington, IA 52353
FAIRFIELD — A strong start wasn’t enough for the Fairfield girls soccer team in its season-opening game against Burlington. The Trojans dropped their Southeast Conference showdown with the Grayhounds, 3-1.
The Trojans struck first, thanks to an early goal from freshman Lilian Buie. Buie launched a ball from the edge of the box and powered it past the Burlington keeper with 34:14 left in the first half.
Fairfield led 1-0 until the final 12 minutes of the opening period, when another freshman scored her first high school goal. Burlington’s Kevyn Siefken scored on a break away, sneaking the ball just past a sliding Trisha Westphal in net to make it 1-1.
The Grayhounds had a few more quality chances in the first half, but Trisha Westphal had a number of saves to keep the game at 1-1.
“If they get one on one, my heart doesn’t skip a beat as much when she’s back there,” said Fairfield head coach Brittany Metcalf. “There are definitely some times when she saves us.”
With the game still tied at 1-1 in the second half, Buie nearly scored the second Trojan goal. She found some space past the last Grayhound defender, and booted one toward the net, but it fell into the lap of the Burlington keeper to keep the game knotted up at 1-1.
Minutes later, Siefken found a huge chunk of space down the middle of the field, but Westphal made a sliding save to once again keep the Grayhounds at bay.
With 21:41 on the clock, however, Siefken would finally break through for the Grayhounds. She kissed one off the right post and in to make it 2-1 Burlington.
After the Grayhounds stopped another rush by Buie, Siefken put the nail in the coffin with a goal in the left corner of the net to make it 3-1 Burlington.
Fairfield’s last great chance came with 12:50 left in the contest. Buie sent a grounder to the right of the keeper, but it hit the post and rolled off.
“It’s really kind of seeing what everyone is good at right now and how good our team works together,” said Metcalf after the game. “It will just take a little more time.”
Metcalf says her team doesn’t take for granted the opportunity to play after losing the season to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
“It was really hard for these girls, and for me last year, to navigate the emotions of not being out on the field,” she said. “It’s good to get out here and leave it out on the field, because you never know when it might be done.”