Most high school teams were off for spring break last week but the James River soccer teams both managed to get in a game. The girls lost to Nelson County and the boys beat Rockbridge in one-goal decisions, both in Springwood.
The girls fell 3-2 to the Governors on March 28 in a non-district affair in the first of two regular season meetings between the two. Knights’ captain Natalie Hughes opened the scoring in the second minute of the match with an unassisted goal as the Knights quickly took charge of the game. Konner Myers finished from a Shea Hubbard assist just after the midpoint of the half for a 2-0 River lead, but in the closing minute of the half Laney Harvey scored for the Governors to go into halftime at 2-1.
The second half was more balanced with possession going both ways and several offensive opportunities for both sides. Harvey tied the game with 18 minutes remaining on the clock, shifting the momentum to the visitors. Another Harvey goal with 11 minutes remaining put the Governors in front for the first time. The Knights mounted multiple spirited attacks, most notably an end-to-end run by Hughes that was denied only after reaching Nelson’s six-yard box. Despite this and other opportunities, James River was unable to level the score and the visiting side left with the early season 3-2 victory.
Keeper Kylee Aaron made four saves for the Knights. Candance Fitzgerald stopped five for the Governors.
The boys played on a rainy Friday in Springwood and it was a good game for the Knights as they beat Rockbridge 5-4. River played a great first 15 minutes and finished strong in the second half.
“We were disorganized and out of shape for the middle of the game,” said coach Jared Whiting. “I was pleased with the effort and the ability of the guys to make the corrections to wrap up with a win. Rockbridge had a strong midfield that gave us a good challenge and that made us step up our game. We had great ball movement in the final third, which allowed us good opportunities for finding the net.”
The River teams will share the Springwood pitch when they host Riverheads in a double-header Thursday, with the girls opening at 6 p.m.