The Columbus North girls soccer team had a strong test to start the season Monday night and passed in what could potentially be a preview of a sectional matchup in October.
Senior twins Corrine and Kristen Orben scored both goals for the Bull Dogs in a 2-1 victory against Center Grove. Kristen Orben put North on the board less than in the ninth minute with a goal off an assist from Elise Whitley.
Corrine Orben followed with a goal of her own in the 31st minute. Tanner Johnson was credited with the assist.
Kristen Orben said getting the first goal gave the Bull Dogs a big momentum advantage for the rest of the game.
“It was really important for us to get the first goal because we knew whoever would get the first goal would get off the momentum and be able to pull through and get the second and third goals to end up with the win,” Kristen Orben said.
The Trojans had a solid start to the second half, scoring in the 44th minute. Paige Waskom assisted to Piper Belden to cut the lead to 2-1.
“You can’t take anything away,” Center Grove coach Mike Bishop said. “We played a good team, and they just got us today. You’re taking shots, and nothing is falling.”
The Trojans kept the pressure on North with 13 total shot attempts and six on goal. A long shot from Center Grove with just over three minutes left in the game came close, hitting the crossbar, but the Bull Dogs were able to hold on for the win.
“I think our defensive stance at the end of the game was pretty solid there, our two center backs especially,” North coach Derek Stewart said. “We had Elise Whitley back there and (freshman) Kate Kolhouse, and they just anchored the defense for us.”
Bull Dogs goalkeeper Liz Tynan finished with five saves. Ella Thompson of Center Grove had three saves on North’s five shots on goal.
Stewart said it was good to see Center Grove early on since this will be the first year the two teams are in the same sectional.
“It was a tough match, and we love that challenge,” Stewart said. “It’s good to see them and see how they play. I know they’re a good team, and they’ll have a good season. They’re definitely going to be tough to beat for a second time.”