MOUNT VERNON — There was something special in the air Thursday.
The Mount Vernon girls soccer team hosted players from the Sting, Upward and YMCA programs prior to the game, then went out and showed the young future stars how it’s done, handily beating visiting New Philadelphia, 4-0, at Yellow Jacket Stadium.
“I can’t ask for anything more. The girls worked so hard — they deserved to win,” said Mount Vernon coach Emanuel Kladias. “The girls are getting the rewards for all the hard work they’ve put in.”
The Yellow Jackets (4-0) got the night started with a bang, nearly scoring less than one minute into the game. The Jackets kept peppering Quaker goalkeeper Sydney Mari before finally breaking through when Kelsey Ries scored off a nice feed from Abigail Smith at the 36:38 mark of the first half.
Both teams had several chances throughout the rest of the first half before Mount Vernon dented the scoreboard again at the 10:21 mark. Smith was assisted by Chelsie Hayes and the Jackets led, 2-0.
“The first half, they were really physical. That’s the best team we’ve played against so far,” Kladias said. “I think we played hard, too, trying to find ways to to unlock the net.”
Leading 2-0 at halftime, Kladias challenged his team to keep up the pace and not give the Quakers any signs of life in the second half. The challenge was accepted and completed nicely, as the Jackets scored twice in the first five minutes of the half.
The first came off a beautiful corner kick from Ries. Hayes took that nice pass and deposited it past Mari for the Jackets third goal of the game.
Just two minutes later Ries was the benefactor of a nice pass from Smith, heading the ball into net and deflating any thoughts the Quakers had of making a comeback.