St. Ursula's Grace Turski, 15, 2nd from left, is hugged by Katie Karban after scoring the first goal against Anthony Wayne at Anthony Wayne High School in Whitehouse on Monday. THE BLADE/LORI KING
When St. Ursula sophomore Grace Turski hit the post just minutes into the Arrows’ showdown Monday with Anthony Wayne, it fired the young forward and her teammates up.
Turski then scored back-to-back goals just 2:02 apart in the early stages of the game to stake the Arrows to a quick 2-0 lead. St. Ursula never let up in taking a 4-1 nonleague victory against the host Generals.
St. Ursula (3-1-1) handed Anthony Wayne (6-1-0) its first loss of the season.
GALLERY: St. Ursula vs. Anthony Wayne
The Arrows scored 9:14 into the game when Turski knocked in a rebound. Junior forward Payton Sullivan got the initial shot, and AW goalkeeper Keaton Grabarczyk made a diving stop. But the ball bounded out to Turski, who crushed it into the left side of the net for a 1-0 lead.
Turski then lofted a shot from about 25 yards away that was perfectly struck. The ball sailed just over Grabarczyk’s head and floated into the goal for a two-goal Arrows advantage with 28:44 still left in the first half.
Turski, who doubled her season goal scoring output, said hitting the post got her into the game.
“It motivated me to get into the attack,” she said. “The first goal set us mentally. [The second goal] came from my heart. I saw the lane and I attacked. We said [when it was] 2-0 at half that it wasn’t finished. We had to keep progressing. We knew they were undefeated and we knew we had to prove ourselves.”
The Arrows then seized a 3-0 lead just 3:38 into the second half after Sydney Rudolph cashed in on her team’s corner kick. Sullivan put the corner kick right in front of the keeper and Rudolph capitalized.
St. Ursula coach Chris Black said his team pressured from the onset.
“We’ve been able to get that against a lot of opponents, but we weren’t able to get the goals. So to get those goals to come with it was big. The team pressure as a whole was what we tried to get.”
Anthony Wayne senior Emilie Reese responded instantly for the Generals when she laced a long shot past Caelan Warnecke just 25 seconds later to make it 3-1.
St. Ursula freshman Emma Cullis then created her own high-grade chance with some good footwork in the box, and cashed in for a 4-1 Arrows’ lead with 17:40 left in regulation.
Anthony Wayne pushed back throughout the second half, but the Arrows held the Generals off. Warnecke made two quick saves on Reese with just under seven minutes left.
The teams each finished with eight shots, but the Arrows had a 5-3 edge in the decisive first half. Warnecke had seven saves.
Black said he stuck with his initial formation because his team was playing so well.
“We want to get the St. Ursula swagger back,” he said. “We want to be at a certain level and maintain it.”
Anthony Wayne coach Lori Williams said her team has 10 sophomores and only four returning starters.
“I think our youth showed a little bit,” Williams said. “The big game nature of it was a good experience to have. Their intensity and ability to put pressure on us in the first half was fantastic. We needed to supersede their intensity. But we did not match that.”
Turski hit the left post from 20 yards out just 1:50 into the game after Sullivan sent a perfect ball up the field.
Sullivan, who earned all-state first team honors, has committed to play at the University of Toledo, assisted on the first and third goals.
AW battled back with consistent ball control. Izzy Merkel’s shot was stopped by Warnecke with more than 12 minutes left in the half. Moments later, the Arrows’ Katie Karban had her shot stopped by Grabarczyk.
The Generals, who are 2-0-0 in Northern Lakes League play, will host Southview (2-2-0, 2-0-0 NLL) on Wednesday.
St. Ursula, which is 1-0-0 in the Three Rivers Athletic Conference, host league foe Clay (3-4-1, 2-0-0 TRAC) on Wednesday.
“Anthony Wayne showed their moxie tonight,” Black said. “That’s a great team over there. But they are younger. Now we face a Clay team that has turned their season around. It will be another good test.”