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Miller's goal, assist ties Oak Ridge with St. Francis

By: By Brett Ransford/Telegraph Correspondent
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The Delta River League’s best two girls’ soccer team hashed it out for the first time this season on Thursday afternoon in El Dorado Hills.

Hannah Miller’s assist to Miranda Miller propelled league-leading Oak Ridge (3-1-1) out of a one-goal deficit created by St. Francis (2-0-2) late in the second half. It was the last match of the first go-around in league play, finishing in a 1-1 draw.

“I think it was luck, personally, but I feel like the only reason why we were able to have the great pass Hannah gave to me was because we kept going and the intensity is what allowed the shot,” said Miranda Miller.

Scoring was absent in the first half, but the Lady Trojans dominated play. They took eight shots and put four on frame, while St. Francis couldn’t put one on goal at all.

Miller said intensity boosted the entire team’s play, following the St. Francis goal in the 58th. In the 56th, Gretchen Goyette appeared to have scored the game’s first goal in Oak Ridge’s favor.

Compound an arguable goal, which was not awarded, with St. Francis’ answering goal two minutes later and the Lady Trojans flipped a switch.

“We deserved that goal,” said Oak Ridge goalkeeper Nina Grimes, who was superb against a talented St. Francis attack, making four critical saves. “We worked really hard this game and it was well deserved. Now that we’ve seen them we know what to expect. We’ll stay positive and take it from there.”

There were plenty of moments to be positive about. Carisa Rivers was a mad woman with the ball in her upper third. She banged one off the post in the 3rd, narrowly put one over goal in the 40th and challenged the keeper again in the 56th.

The Lady Trojans own their first positive record against St. Francis since joining the DRL two seasons ago. They’re 1-0-2 in the last year since losing its previous two straight in a combined 8-0 tally.

St. Francis will make up a game against Ponderosa (1-1-1), but as it stands Oak Ridge is on top of the league as the only team with three wins.

The final five matches begin with Oak Ridge at rival Folsom (0-4-0) at 4 p.m. Tuesday. Oak Ridge won the last meeting 3-0 on March 13.