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Girls soccer: Apple Valley sends Irish packing

Playing from behind isn't easy, especially when you're a team that struggles to produce a lot of offense.

The Rosemount girls soccer team allowed a goal to Apple Valley in the first 30 seconds of last Tuesday's Section 3AA tournament opener and never could draw the score back even as it was shut out for the eighth time this season in a 3-0 loss.

"Apple Valley is tournament-tested and has a history of playing well in the sections. They came out with a purpose and intensity we couldn't match," Rosemount coach Kevin Adams said. "We tried a number of things to try and jumpstart our scoring, including a change in formation, but the execution was not there and Apple Valley made sure we had little space to move."

The Irish finished with a record of 6-9-3 and scored just 29 goals, compared to last season when they scored 40 goals while going 11-5-2. Hannah Halterman led the team in goals for the second season in a row with 11.

"This was a tough season for us as we were never able to establish a rhythm to our season and could not consistently find that level of confidence that is needed to make a push and be considered one of the top teams in the state," Adams said. "We had some excellent games that showed promise but could not sustain that momentum into the next game. This team had talent but we were just unable to solve our scoring inconsistencies and put it all together."

While the offense often struggled, the team's defense emerged as a strength. The unit of Maddie Bleick, Molly Buck, Sydney Newton, Kylee Carr, Sarah Jacques and Jess Cox helped hold opponents to 26 goals in 18 games and keeper Kate Mallory finished her career with a record of 29-18-8 and 20 shutouts.