SUMMIT, NJ - The local contest for political office, culminating in the November 3 election, is nearly over, but the Summit High School Girls Varsity Soccer Team's NJSIAA Tournament campaign is just getting started, and their opening-round, stump speech performance was a landslide victory.
Cecily Stabler scored twice, and goals from Helen Louise Johnson, Morgan Strabley, and Tess Hochberger saw the Hilltoppers easily see off Belleville, 5-0. Callie Humphrey recorded three saves to earn the clean sheet, her and the team's tenth of the season.
Summit created numerous scoring chances throughout the match, and finished with a staggering 32 shots at target, putting 22 of those on goal -- including three blasts off the crossbar.
From the opening whistle, the Hilltoppers were on the front foot, and took a 1-nil lead in the opening minute when Moriarty dribbled through the center of the Belleville defense and took a left footed shot which ricocheted off the far post and caromed to Stabler who made no mistake, placing the ball in the far upper ninety with what proved to be the match-winner.
Summit kept pressuring and generated a second goal in the 20th minute, as Anna Turk passed to Stabler at the left side of the goal, the junior finding the back of the net, giving her a brace and the Hilltoppers a 2-nil advantage.
Still in the opening half, Hochberger located Johnson making a diagonal run into the box. The sophomore's clean first touch with her left foot was followed by a right-footed bullet out of the Belleville keeper's reach for a 3-nil lead the Hilltoppers took to the half.
Summit added itheir fourth goal in the 71st minute off the foot of Strabley, assisted by Moriarty. In the 87th minute, Strabley's salvo from the right flank found Hochberger, who chested in the cross from the doorstep to close the scoring.
The Hilltoppers are back in tournament action November 5, traveling to number-one seeded West Morris Central for a match that kicks off at 2 p.m. West Morris opened tournament play with a 10-nil win over 16th-seeded Ferris.