Naperville Central midfielder Carly Franzese didn’t know what to do after she scored a goal early in the Redhawks’ 2-0 victory over Oswego Monday afternoon.
It was the first time the senior had scored a goal in a high school game.
“I saw an opening and I wasn’t marked, so I just ran through and someone made the perfect pass,” said Franzese. “I didn’t even know how to react once it went in since it was my first goal in high school. It was so exciting.”
It was forward Abby Joyce who made the pass to Franzese, setting up a goal that gave the Redhawks an 1-0 lead just five and half minutes into the game.
Forward Kristen Krebs came off the bench to give Naperville Central a 2-0 lead 20 minutes into the first half. Defenseman Amanda Albert’s entry pass was deflected by midfielder Paige Silver right to Krebs, who then scored her first goal of the season from five yards out.
“She [Krebs] needed to get that first one to get her going,” said Naperville Central head coach Ed Watson. “Early in the season, it’s nice for girls who haven’t scored yet to get on the score sheet. So it was really good to see Kristen and Carly score today.”
Naperville Central (4-0) was able to dominate possession all game, and the Redhawks out-shot the Panthers 17-2. Oswego (0-2) had very little success getting the ball past midfield.
“We kept the pressure on them. When the ball really came out of their end, it was tough for them to gain possession and link too many things together,” said Watson. “We bottled them up pretty well, our back four kept things under control. We kept the ball in front of us.”
Oswego has yet to score a goal this season.
The Redhawks have won their first four games, but Watson said the beginning of the season is about more than just wins and losses.
“These first five games before spring break are like our spring training,” said Watson. “It’s always nice to win these games, but more importantly, it’s all about giving the coaches a sense of what we have and what we need to tweak, and giving the girls an opportunity to know one another as teammates.”
The Redhawks will finish off their opening five-game stretch on Wednesday night against Waubonsie Valley at North Central College.
“Game one was a little shaky, game two was a little shaky, but three and four have been better,” said Watson. “That’s a good sign and we look forward to keeping things going against Waubonsie on Wednesday.”
I wrote this story for the Chicago Sun-Times, Naperville Sun and Aurora Beacon. It appears here.