Cumberland Valley Christian

Blazers win 2-1 to reach MDCC semifinals

The Cumberland Valley Christian Blazers pushed in a pair of first-half goals and then held on to defeat Heritage Academy 2-1 Tuesday in a Mason-Dixon Christian Conference girls soccer quarterfinal game.

The Blazers (7-6-1, 7-5-1 MDCC) will play at top-seeded Shalom Christian at 7 p.m. Thursday in the MDCC semifinals. The winner will advance to Saturday’s championship game at Grace Academy.

The Blazers took an early lead when Luisa Robinson connected on a goal in the ninth minute. Heritage tied the score seven minutes later.

“Playoff games are always tough,” Blazers coach Paul Lundy said. “Heritage hit a high ball from about 40 yards out that caught a bit of wind and had just enough pace on it to sneak in between the crossbar and Mackenzie’s (Sites) outstretched hands. After that shot, they had a few more close opportunities. Emmalyn Hott cleared a ball off the goal line to save a goal.”

The Blazers took the lead for good when Laurel Reitz scored on an assist from Sarah Vandersleen in the 31st minute.

“We made a needed adjustment at halftime to our alignment, and it really kept Heritage on their heels most of the second half,” Lundy said. “Mackenzie Sites played a great game in goal. Laurel Reitz generated some great attacks and ended up putting in the eventual game-winner in the first half. Luisa Robinson picked a great game to score her first varsity goal.”

The Blazers held advantages in shots (17-9) and corner kicks (5-2). Sites came up with eight saves.

“We have a very tough match ahead of us in the MDCC semifinals,” Lundy said. “We’ll spend the next couple of days preparing to battle it out against Shalom on Thursday under the lights.”