NEWARK — Two of Delaware’s best girls soccer teams met Thursday afternoon, but one clearly emerged as a team to beat in the upcoming state tournament. Padua controlled play from the opening whistle and defeated Archmere, 7-0, at Independence School, handing the Auks their first setback of the season.
The undefeated Pandas, ranked first in Division I, attacked the Auks the entire game, and it didn’t take long for them to get on the scoreboard. Sophomore Arryana Daniels blasted a shot past Archmere keeper Kyra Giakas in the third minute. Mackenzie Scully found Daniels streaking down the right side, and Daniels hit the far corner.
Padua kept the heat on Archmere throughout the first half, but Giakas kept the Auks close with several key saves. The Pandas had several corner kicks and set plays, but they were limited to the one goal. But Archmere could only hold the score a 1-0 for so long. In the 22nd minute, Scully showed off her passing prowess once again, finding Lindsay Machamer alone at the top of the penalty box. Machamer found a hole to the keeper’s right, and the score was 2-0.
After a few more near misses, the Pandas added a third goal with about a minute to go in the half. This time, Ashlee Brentinger sent a pass through the crease, where Daniels was waiting. She tapped it in for her second of the afternoon.
Padua continued the onslaught in the second half. The goal scorers were Karlee Panella, with the assist to Emilia Ryjewski; Anne Brush, from Panella; Meg Mallon, again from Ryjewski; and Ryjewski, with Gabrille Villermaux picking up the helper.
Padua (12-0-1) finished with 23 shots and held the Auks to only two. Abigail Boudart earned the shutout, the team’s 10th of the season. The Pandas wrap up the regular season next week with a pair of big games. They will meet Charter on Monday at 3 p.m. at Wilmington University, followed by the finale against St. Mark’s on Wednesday at Baynard Stadium at 7 p.m.
Archmere (10-1-1), the second-ranked team in Division II, has a bus ride to Georgetown on the agenda for Saturday as the team meets Delmarva Christian at noon.