Annie Jiménez, who never met a shot she didn’t like, promised that she would score a hat trick during Saturday’s U12 Central championship match. Nevermind that most nine-year-olds don’t know what a hat trick is, Annie is a talented player with a unique knack for putting the ball in the goal. Which she did three times, once to open the game, once a gamewinner to start the second half and once to close out the match in the waning moments.
While one twin put balls in a goal, the other prevented scoring. Lucy Jiménez sacrificed her own offensive stats and glory by playing a fierce goalkeeper for two thirds of the match, the two lone goals against her scored when no teammates hustled back. With Rosie Jiménez chipping in a goal and an assist, the family’s fingerprints were all over the team’s 6-2 Match of the Week championship game victory over Newton Storm.
Caroline Canally (1 goal, 1 assist), Sarah Carbeau (1 goal), Payton Vaughn (1 assist) and Fallon Vaughn (1 assist) rounded out the scoresheet, with Emily Langell, Lara Speer and Emily O’Rourke also contributing to the team’s success.
O’Rourke and Fallon Vaughn demonstrated their defensive responsibility and leadership, especially late on, but it was Lucy Jiménez who earns the nod as the final Junior Player of the Week. Without her aptitude in goal, and her willingness to play not only an entire half but to stay in for part of the second half, Newton Storm very likely is on level terms. Lucy’s brave goalkeeping and exceptional distribution are the capstone to a comparably quiet but tremendously consistent and vital contribution this year.
The Senior Player of the Week was in on five of her team’s six goals on Sunday. After organizing her team’s substitution patterns, she subbed in and scored twice, then returned to the bench. When informed that it would take more than two goals to be named player of the week, she re-entered the game and assisted on her team’s next goal. She leveled the goal with a scorcher to start the second half, then aided the final goal of a 6-4 comeback victory. So, Abby Mulligan, you have earned it! Not just for your line (3 goals, 2 assists) but for your high energy and budding leadership.
This year’s final Goal of the Week is ironically the lone goal Abby doesn’t get credit for, though she likely gets a notation in Calgary or Quebec. Mannschaft’s game-winner was scored with aplomb by Anna Rollender. From Emily Rollender. From Anna Rollender. From Abby Mulligan. From Emily Rollender. From Lisa Raddassi. Clinical. Only wish we had it on film …
Wait. Since it’s the final week of the year we’ll name two goals. The other Goal of the Week was a one-touch bullet exploded off the foot of Haley Fradkin in the Elephants match. Cutting into space while Coach Jay served a corner kick, Haley absolutely obliterated the ball past defenders and the hopeless goalkeeper. A brilliant finish — timing, accuracy and power.