Defending South Jersey Group III girls soccer champion and fifth-seeded Ocean City High School fell 5-0 to top-seeded Moorestown in the semifinals Wednesday.
Ciara Imhotep scored two goals to lead Moorestown, The No. 7 team in The Press Elite 11. Isa Arvelo, Maggie Brown and Rylee Brown added one goal apiece.
Abby Fenton made six saves for the Red Raiders, the No. 8 team in The Press Elite 11.
“We fell a little flat,” said Ocean City coach Kelly Halliday, whose team trailed 3-0 in the first half. “We didn’t start that game that great, and of course, the No. 1 seed is going to capitalize on something like that.
“We had a great effort throughout the game, and the girls were trying to do the right thing, but we had a lot of little things not go our way, and the score shows that. The second half was better than the first, but we couldn’t generate any offense. Our defense played tough, but Moorestown had some terrific goals.”
Last year Ocean City won the sectional title when it beat Cherry Hill West 2-1 in penalty kicks after a scoreless regulation play.
“It’s interesting to reflect on things and try to be positive right after the playoffs,” Halliday said. “I have six seniors on the team, and they will truly be missed and have left their mark on the team. Moving forward we have some girls that maybe didn’t get their chance this year on varsity. Our J.V. and freshman teams had a good season and I’m sure we’ll be contenders again.
“We want to aim for another Cape-Atlantic League title and win South Jersey Group III (again).”
Senior Anna Devlin, a four-year varsity player with the program, feels this year was the best she’s experienced.
“I think that our team was a lot stronger and a lot closer,” said Devlin, who will be playing lacrosse at NCAA Division III The College of New Jersey next year. “And we bonded really well this year.”
Ocean City 0 0—0
Moorestown 3 2—5
Goals—Imhotep (2), Arvelo, M. Brown, R. Brown M.
Goalies—Fenton (6) OC.
Records—OC 16-6-3, Moorestown 18-4.