The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

HS Sports Forest Hills

September 17, 2012

Forest Hills girls prove themselves the team to beat

SIDMAN — The Forest Hills girls soccer team no longer feels the need to prove itself to anyone, but that doesn’t mean that the Rangers haven’t set some lofty goals for themselves this season.

“This year there is more pressure on the girls and I can see it, especially on the seniors,” said Forest Hills coach Donna Gallaher after her team defeated Penn Cambria 13-0 on Monday to raise it record to 6-0-1.

“When they came in as freshmen, Forest Hills had won four games in four years. The first year, they went 13-7 and went to their first playoff. The next year, they went to the district championship and we were still trying to prove ourselves to some of the other established teams in the area.

“This year, I think, is the first year that we don’t have to prove ourselves. We are the ones with the target on our backs and it’s harder. Their personalities, they don’t like to be the ones that others are gunning for. They just love soccer and want to go out there and play. They don’t like all the pressure.”

The District 6-AA finalists got goals from nine different players against the Panthers with senior Casey Gallaher scoring three goals and adding five assists while senior teammate Briana Kostan supplied three goals and an assist.

“I like team sports and I like soccer because I am so close to all the girls and I’ve been with them forever,” Casey Gallaher said. “We just work really well together. Once you work together and know where everyone is, you can find that person and they just have to finish for you.

“There’s some pressure on us because we really want that district championship in our last year. There is pressure on us, but we are just trying to work hard. You are comfortable out there and the whole team takes the pressure, it’s not just like one person.”

Forest Hills never let Penn Cambria settle in, going on the offensive right away as Kostan scored less than two minutes into the contest. Gallaher assisted on the goal.

Ashley Lucas put Forest Hills second goal in the net off an assist from Kostan.

Less than three minutes later, Gallaher dashed through the Penn Cambria defense and sent the ball past keeper Ally Reese on an unassisted effort.

The Panthers changed keepers after Briannah Baxter’s unassisted goal at the 27:49 mark which gave Forest Hills a 4-0 lead.

“They started incredibly quickly,” Penn Cambria first-year coach Jessica Kline said. “Forest Hills is a great team and has been for a couple years. They play well and our girls just need to step up. The girls just didn’t play to their potential, I think we have a lot more that we didn’t show today.”

The Rangers kept pouring on the offense with their next goal coming on an unassisted direct kick by Caitlyn Gallaher for a 5-0 advantage.

Forest Hills also got two more first-half goals from Casey Gallaher and one from Kostan while Marlee Zubek and Samantha Dively also added goals for the Rangers, who took a 10-0 lead at the half.

In the second half, Kostan, Brooke Novotny and Alyssa Peretin all scored goals for Forest Hills with Casey Gallaher assisting on all three.

“We have to play with more of a team effort and we have to rely on everybody,” Coach Gallaher said. “We don’t have one superstar. We have a good team and they like being part of a team. We have certain players that are key, but in soccer you have 11 players out there and not one that can carry the team. The girls like that better.”

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