By Kevin Eickman
Much like some other Milford spring sports teams, the girls soccer team is welcoming a new coach. This past Thursday the Bucs hosted Cape Henlopen in the season opener. At the helm for Milford was 23 year old Allie Ford.
The results for Milford could best be described as mixed. Compliments of a first half Patty Delva goal, the Bucs enjoyed an early lead. Unfortunately the visiting Vikings were able to equalize before the half, then take the lead early in the second stanza. From that point on, Milford played some of their best soccer in recent memory. The Bucs set up shop in the Cape end of the pitch, and did nothing but pressure their opponents.
Time and again, Milford was able to work down the right side of the the Cape defense, but unable to finish the job. Whether it was a shot skimming off the crossbar, traveling just wide of the net or just one of several outstanding saves by Cape junior goalkeeper Olivia Baratto, Cape stayed strong. “Their keeper was outstanding the whole game,” Ford stated. “It was very difficult to get it past her and she came up real big when she needed to.”
While a loss was not the goal, there were many positives to be taken from Milford’s 2-1 defeat. One of those positives was the way Milford moved the ball. Unlike in recent years, Milford looked fairly strong in the short possession passing game. While trying to press up for an equalizer, the Milford back line became exposed at times but did not crack allowing the Buccaneers to remain within reach. “We have some inexperience in goal and have been working real hard at the position,” said Ford. “We know that as the season continues we will become better at the position.”
Ford believes that this year’s squad has a lot of potential, but it will take some time for them to get used to the new system. “There are things that each player will have to learn to do, things that they haven’t been asked to do in the past,” Ford commented. “It is obvious the girls are willing to work hard, so I look forward to them picking it up very quickly.”
Seniors Angela Gleysteen and Corrine Bogan will be looked to provide leadership, along with sophomore Daphne Leighty and a host of other younger players. “We have a real good mix and I think as the season goes on we will get better in all areas of the game,” stated Ford.
Ford was a four year starter at Dover high school, before attending Goldey-Beacom College. Ford played soccer for two years at the Division II institution, prior to sustaining a career ending injury.