Orpin's Goal Clinches South Title for Mounties

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CHESHIRE, Mass. -- Up until Saturday, there really hasn't been much separating the Hoosac Valley and Mount Greylock girls' soccer teams this season. The Mounties won the first meeting between the two teams by scoring a penalty-kick goal in the final second of the game, but since then both squads have been pretty much neck and neck in the South Division standings. 

They entered the final division game of the season tied for first place with 16 points, setting the stage for Saturday's winner-take-all contest at Hoosac. In the end, stellar goal keeping by senior Margot Besnard and a second-half goal by sophomore Kelsey Orpin was enough for the Mounties to earn a 2-1 win and clinch their second straight South Division title. 

Besnard finished with 12 saves in the game, erasing a 23-8 edge in shots for the Hurricanes. Orpin netted the game winner in the 57th minute, scoring off of a pass from junior Sophie Leamon. Orpin also assisted on her team's first goal, setting up freshman midfielder Melissa Swann 13 minutes into the game. Greylock's ability to produce on the offensive end was even more impressive considering senior striker Alex Majetich missed the game due to injury.

"The Greylock girls played a great game and took advantage of a few momentary breakdowns in our defense," Hoosac head coach Blair Mahar said. "That's what good teams do. I thought we outplayed and outshot Greylock, but we just had a hard time finishing. We had a few rock-solid chances to put the ball in the net, but just couldn't make it happen on Saturday. The game on Friday versus Lee took a toll on the girls."

Senior Danielle Beauchemin answered Swann's goal 45 seconds later, finishing off a feed from eighth-grader Lily Kronick for her team-leading 13th goal of the season. Sophomore Megan Richardson made six saves in net for the Hurricanes, who also received a solid performance on the defensive end from sweeper Courtney Hayer. 

In addition to Besnard's stellar play in net, Mounties' head coach Tom Ostheimer credited eighth-grader Sarah Stripp for her efforts on the defensive line. 

Both teams now wait to find out where they will be seeded in the upcoming Division 2 Western Mass. tournament. Greylock (10-3-3) should be slighter higher than Hoosac based on its head-to-head record, but the Hurricanes 11-4 mark should also give them one of the higher seeds in the draw. 

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