The Rhinelander High School girls' soccer team advanced to 4-0 in the Great Northern Conference after a strong first-half Monday led them to a win over Lakeland. The Hodags scored all three goals in the first 45 minutes of action and held on to blank the Thunderbirds at River Valley Bank Field in Minocqua.
Junior Kenedy Van Zile, junior Izzy Haverkampf, and sophomore Ella Schiek all scored in the win. And with the help of Rhinelander's defense and sophomore keeper Kahlie Arneson, were able to keep Lakeland.
Overall the Hodags controlled the tempo of the match on a cool and rainy evening especially in the first half and were able to capitalize on their chances. While the second half the Thunderbirds were able to produce more chances but came up empty handed but so did RHS.
Rhinelander didn't waste much time and got on the board in the seventh minute. Senior Jaden Olski delievered a cross just inside the 18-yard box and Kenedy Van Zile fired a shot to the bottom left corner. Lakeland goalie Tessa Tormoen looked as if she would block the shot but the ball trickled off her glove and back across the goal line.
From there, the Hodags had several other quality looks to tack onto their early lead including back to back corners, but would not score again until the 23rd minute. Senior defender Payton Van Zile sent a pass to the middle and Haverkampf controlled the pass about 20-yards back and put her shot passed Tormoen just inside the left post to give RHS a 2-0 lead.
And with just under three minutes left in the first half, Rhinelander added their third and final goal of the night. Kenedy Van Zile took advantage of a Lakeland turnover and beat a defender up the left sideline and carried the ball inside the box before well-placed pass that Schiek struck from inside the penalty kick area.
The Thunderbirds best looks to score on the night came in a 14-minute span midway through the second half when they caught the Hodags defense out of position. First Sophia Myschchyshyn broke loose but her shot was high and to the left. Sagen Quale rushed a shot about six minutes later that Arneson saved. And moments after that Abby Parris got around the defense and rocketed a shot that Arneson once again saved near her head.
The Hodags offense responded and had their fair share of chances to adding additional goals in the final 15 minutes, but couldn't get any more past Tormoen in the final 45 minutes. Schiek delivered several crosses inside the box, but most of the Hodags attackers shots were directly at Tormoen. But Rhinelander's early attack proved to be enough to hold on and fend off Lakeland to earn the 3-0 win.
Rhinelander held a 30-12 advantage on total shots on the night with eight of Lakeland's shots coming in the second half. Arneson would record the win with another shutout and finished with six saves.
RHS will be back in action tonight when they travel to Antigo. The Robins are 0-5 overall this season and are the only GNC team without a conference win. The Hodags will have a busy schedule to close out the week and will host Mosinee on Thursday night and will host a non-conference match on Saturday against Marshfield.