NEW MANCHESTER -Rivalry week has gone well for the Golden Bears.
Alex Burch and Megan Collins each collected goals to lead the Oak Glen girls' soccer team to a 2-1 victory over local-rival East Liverpool Tuesday night at the Bears Den.
With the win, the Golden Bears get back to the .500 mark on the season at 8-8-1. The loss drops the Potters below the .500 mark. East Liverpool is now 7-8.
"For the last couple of games we have really played the whole game from start to finish," first-year Oak Glen girls' head coach Sam Paletta said. "The girls are starting to know how to finish, to put teams away and how to hold on to close leads at the end. "We knew they could get there. As coaches we knew they would get there. The girls are good players. They are smart players. They just had to learn how to get to that point of having confidence in being able to hold on and win, and we have gotten there."
Cassandra Deremer and Jenna Mason each tallied an assist. Deremer recorded her assist on Burch's goal. Mason assisted the goal by Collins, who has now scored 102 goals in her career.
Goalie Casey Highfield made 16 saves.
Anna Guildoo tallied the lone goal of the game for the Potters. Nicole Linkous assisted on the goal.
"I have to give it to my girls,' first-year East Liverpool head coach Katie Smith said. "They played until the last second. They never gave up. In the last 20 seconds we had a scoring attack, but we couldn't put the ball into the back of the net.
"Alex Cunningham stepped up in the midfield, and she had a great game.
"Megan Collins is a great soccr player. We marked her man to man, and she still endeed up scoring.
"We are looking forward to our first sectional game. We have a few days to practice. We will be working hard and looking forward to going far this year."
Chelsea Possage made 11 saves in goal for the Potters.
"East Liverpool is a tough-aggressive team," Paletta said. "They don't quit. In probably the last five minutes of the game, they were strictly playing offense trying to score. It was a hard-aggressive game.
They are well coached. Katie does a real-good job with them. They are short on numbers. We thought we could wear them down, but I don't think you can wear East Liverpool down. They are so well conditioned that they don't wear down. You have to go out there and beat them."
The victory over East Liverpool was Oak Glen's second in as many nights against of the Golden Bears main rivals. Oak Glen defeated Weir, 3-1, Monday night at home.
"It was two-real good wins," Paletta said. "We are giving the girls tomorrow off so they can rest their tired legs and bruises. We are going to go back at it Thursday.
"Our final regular season game is Saturday away at Cambridge. I know it is going to be a tough game.
"We will be fine tuning some things. We talked to the girls about how important the game is Saturday. With a win, we will have a winning season. That's a huge accomplishment for the team. The other thing is we want to make sure we are ready for the sectional tournament which starts on Tuesday."
Oak Glen, Weir and Madonna all tied for second place in the section. A meeting was held Tuesday to decide the final pairings for the West Virginia Class AA-A Region 1 Section 1 Tournament.
Oak Glen will play at 6 p.m. Tuesday at home against fifth-seeded Magnolia. The winner of the game will play against Wheeling Central on Thursday. The time and location has yet to be determined.
Also on Thursday, Weir will play at Madonna.
The winners of the semifinals will play at 2 p.m. Saturday.
"I think the girls are peaking at the right time going into the state tournament," Paletta said.
East Liverpool plays against Edison at 6 p.m. Wednesday in an Ohio Division II Eastern District Sectional Semifinal down at Red Devil Stadium in St. Clairsville.