Trenton and Woodhaven each survived the first seven games of the Downriver League schedule without a defeat.
Trenton at Woodhaven girls’ soccer photo gallery
On Saturday afternoon, the two league powers battled it out on the pitch to decide which team would head into the DRL’s position round as the No. 1 seed.
A goal in the 20th minute proved to be all that visiting Trenton needed, as it escaped with a 1-0 victory over the rival Warriors on what was a warm and sunny yet also windy day.
With the win, the Trojans wrapped up the round-robin portion of the DRL schedule with a record of 8-0 and improved to 10-3-1 overall. Woodhaven dropped to 7-1 in the league and 10-2-1 overall.
Next up is the DRL’s position round, which will feature each of the top four seeds squaring off in a head-to-head matchups. The bottom five will compete in the same manner.
To wrap up the position round, Trenton and the Warriors are set to meet again on Wednesday, May 18 in the No. 1 vs. No. 2 game. Before that, each club will face Gibraltar Carlson and Edsel Ford.
On Saturday, both teams were solid on defense for most of the contest. The two high-scoring clubs managed just eight shots combined, as Trenton finished with five shots and two-time defending DRL champ Woodhaven had only three. Overall, the Warriors and Trojans have accounted for every DRL title since the league was formed back in the 2009-10 school year.
Along with the importance of Saturday’s victory, Trenton coach Mike Hatfield said playing in that type of a game will also be beneficial for his squad in the near future.
“We’re a team that normally averages 20 something shots a game, and so are they,” Hatfield said. “You cut that down to five and that’s something we’re going to grow from. The farther you go in the (state) tournament, the fewer shots you are going to get. You have to learn to capitalize on the ones you get. ”
In the 18th minute, Trojans goalkeeper Leila Gorno came up with a big save, following a corner kick.
But roughly two minutes later, Trenton cashed in on an opportunity when Ava Carson blasted a shot that got by Woodhaven keeper Kamari Dabbs and put the visitors up 1-0. Claire Gonyea was credited with an assist.
Dabbs made a nice save in the 24th minute and kept Trenton from increasing its lead.
Inside the final five minutes of the half, Gonyea picked up a rebound near the Woodhaven goal. The sophomore got off a clean shot but the ball banged off the post and bounced back out on the turf.
About 10 minutes into the second half, the Warriors’ Maya Justice made some impressive moves to get deep into the Trenton zone. However, the freshman’s bid for her 20th goal of the season was stopped.
Overall, Woodhaven had its top two scorers on the pitch Saturday with Justice and Parker Cheney. Unfortunately for the team, some key players were out due to an illness. First-year Warriors coach Abbey Lorenz said their absence hurt the team, but it was not an excuse.
“At the end of the day, you’ve got to come out with your best 11 and we tried our hardest,” Lorenz said. “I just don’t think we were connecting as well as we could have. Defensively we didn’t make great decisions at times and we just couldn’t connect.
“Trenton was the better team today but I think we’re going to respond. We’ll see them again in a few weeks and hopefully we can come out harder that time. ”
Inside the final five minutes of the game, Justice was able to work her way into the Trojans’ zone. She got a shot off, but the ball was knocked down in front by the Trenton defense.
Next up for both teams was a tough non-league game on Monday, on the road. The Trojans were scheduled for a game at area rival Riverview while Woodahven was set to travel north for a game at Pontiac Notre Dame Prep.