A young and relentless North Carroll girls soccer team pulled off the first major upset of the season in Carroll county last night, stunning previously unbeaten and seventh-ranked South Carroll, 3-2, at North Carroll.
The Panthers sent three and four girls to the ball all night long to dazzle the Cavaliers with three straight goals after South Carroll struck quickly for a 1-0 lead just 90 seconds into the game.
The three-goal spree was completed for the home team when Jen Baker caught South Carroll goalkeeper Kendra Pulis out of the net and sent a shot into the goal from 15 yards for a 3-1 lead with 6:42 left in the game.
Baker's goal came after North Carroll (3-3) had dominated the action for nearly 33 minutes without scoring in the second half.
It would have been enough to take the fire out of most teams, but South Carroll (4-1) came battling back to reduce the lead to 3-2 a little more than a minute later.
Michele Mitchell put the Cavaliers back into the fight when she scored off a nice give-and-go from Jaimee Isaacs with 5:31 remaining in the game.
The Mitchell goal finally pumped some life in the sometimes listless South Carroll team, and the Cavaliers sent four shots at the net in the final four minutes of the game in an attempt to tie the score.
But North Carroll goalkeeper Teresa Mays made three saves, and Amber Clutter 's shot with 26 seconds left was wide right.
When the final seconds ticked off the clock and the Panthers were clinging to the 3-2 lead, the North Carroll players charged into the middle of the field for a brief celebration.
The Panthers didn't look at all like a team that had lost three in a row coming into the game.
They played textbook soccer and virtually shut down the county's top player, Clutter, a junior who entered the game with 11 goals in just four games. Clutter was limited to one assist last night.
The Cavaliers' high-profile forward was shadowed throughout the night by North Carroll's Amber Fleming.
Fleming prevented Clutter from breaking free for any of her one-on- one goals.
Isaacs scored the first goal of the game for South Carroll and added an assist on the second goal.
North Carroll's first two goals were scored by junior Carrie Hale and sophomore Julie Baker, with both scores coming on unsettled situations in front of the net.
Julie Baker scored with just nine seconds left in the first half to give North Carroll a 2-1 lead.