By Ron Rop
Experience won out over youth on Wednesday night in a Division 4 semifinal girls soccer game.
Highly ranked Grandville Calvin Christian flashed that experience, along with foot skills and speed, and defeated Western Michigan Christian 3-0 in a game at East Kentwood’s Crestwood Middle School.
The victory moves the Squires into Saturday’s state final game against Clarkston Everest Collegiate, which defeated Madison Heights Bishop Foley 3-2 in the other semifinal game. The title game is 3 p.m. Saturday at Michigan State University.
“Obviously, they are a great team and we are young,” Warrior coach David Hulings said.
The Squires outshot the Warriors 17-0 and put heavy pressure on the Warrior net. Had it not been for the effort of freshman goalkeeper Lindsey Johnson, the score would have been lopsided.
“Obviously, it would have been worse if Alyssa hadn’t played a great game,” Hulings said.
Neither team had much of any offensive pressure in the early going. WMC did have a free kick from 40 yards out, but could not generate a scoring chance.
Calvin Christian did get on the board with 18:30 left in the first half when its first quality scoring chance came off the foot of junior Sylvia Davidson.
The Squires did get on the board with 6:06 left in the opening half when Natalie Curry’s through ball found her sister, Hilary Curry, who broke in alone and scored.
Before the half ended, Calvin did get several more scoring chances, but did not score.
The second half was a much different story as the Warriors began to wear down. In the second half, the victors added two goals and peppered Johnson with 13 more shots.
And WMC had trouble getting the ball in the feet of their top offensive players, senior Timera Crosby and freshman Alexys Riksen.
“With Timera up top … she’s a dynamic player,” Calvin coach Tim TerHaar said. “We felt good about the way we played, but we knew we started wearing them down.”
Natalie Curry scored on an assist from Katie Klunder with 28:10 remaining and Jenny Holsem scored on a hard shot with 15:39 left to cap the game’s scoring.
Hulings emptied his bench with 4:45 remaining. WMC’s roster consists of 10 freshmen, three sophomores, three juniors and three seniors.
WMC ended the season 18-4-1.