WOOD RIVER — The East Alton-Wood River Oilers struggled to warm up against the Wesclin Warriors on Tuesday at the Wood River Soccer Park in a non-conference girls' soccer game.
The Oilers, who dropped to 0-3, fell 4-0 in regulation to Wesclin, who improved to 3-1 with the win.
"We had a good effort considering they're (Wesclin) probably the best team we've faced so far," EA-WR head coach Matt Herndon said. "Wesclin should do very well in their conference this year. They're a tough team."
The Oilers struggled to get offense going throughout the first half as Wesclin put heavy pressure to keep EA-WR busy deep in its own zone.
The Oilers were able to contain the Warriors until sophomore Kacey Bell took a shot over the hands of goalkeeper Chrissy Long at 21:18.
Bell didn't waste time to double her efforts and double the score when she took a shot that made it in the bottom corner past Long at 19:24.
The Oilers were able to hold the Warriors back until halftime and hit the benches down 2-0.
"She's (Long) done a good job for us so far this season in goal," Herndon said. "Honestly, she kept us in this game. Chrissy is a senior and she really stepped up after we lost Becca (Richards) with her torn ACL. It's helped us a lot that she has been in that role before and has some experience. She shouldn't have to make 17 saves in the first half, shouldn't have to face that many shots."
For the game, Long made 28 saves off of a whopping 32 Wesclin shots.
The Warriors kept their pace going into the second half. Bell wasted no time claiming her first hat trick of 2015 at 31:51 to extend Wesclin's lead to 3-0 over the Oilers.
EA-WR struggled to get past the midfield line as the Warriors continued to compress the defense. Wesclin senior Zoe Christopher left her mark at the Wood River Soccer Park as she drilled a shot into the net at 19:15 of the second half to extend the lead to 4-0.
The Oilers kicked up the effort late in the second half, but were unable to capitalize. EA-WR kept the Warriors from doing further damage.
"I think we did everything well but finishing," Wesclin head coach Terry Calvert said. "We gave up a few really good opportunities, but we passed well and our defense was very strong. We had great senior leadership today on the field. Bell is a sophomore this year and she had some varsity time last year as a freshman. This was definitely her breakout game."
As the yo-yo spring temperatures continue to rise and fall, the 0-3 Oilers hope to bring the heat as the weather begins to improve.