2017-06-01 / Sports

Wilson’s hat trick lifts Leland past Burt Lake

Glen Lake, Leland to clash in district semifinals tonight
By Jay Bushen
Of The Enterprise staff


OLIVIA FELLOWS (7) celebrates after scoring a goal against Burt Lake NMCA in Leland on Tuesday. Fellows and the Comets had plenty to celebrate, capturing a 6-0 district quarterfinal victory. OLIVIA FELLOWS (7) celebrates after scoring a goal against Burt Lake NMCA in Leland on Tuesday. Fellows and the Comets had plenty to celebrate, capturing a 6-0 district quarterfinal victory. She struck it perfectly.

Olivia Fellows rainbowed a ball through 30 yards of rain, past a box full of players, over the head of a helpless keeper and into the back of the net.

The big smile and brief celebration that followed were well deserved— especially since Fellows and her Leland teammates were in the process of snapping an eight-game losing streak.

The inexperience and lack of offensive execution that plagued Leland late in the regular season were nowhere to be seen at Hancock Field on Tuesday as the Lady Comets opened the District 64 Tournament with a 6-0 quarterfinal victory over Burt Lake NMCA.

“It was nice to get a win and some more minutes for the girls. We played really well,” coach Joe Burda said. “We didn’t know what to expect. We’d seen Burt Lake’s record and scores, but it was nice that we beat them by playing good soccer, connecting passes and not just trying to jam it in the goal. We’re progressing and it’s showing.”

The Comets (7-12-1), who went up 4-0 on Fellows’ free kick late in the first half, also had goals from Mollie Grishaw, Jessica Pershinske and Rowan Wilson. Wilson had a hat trick, her first of the season.

Burda said he was especially impressed by the goals from Grishaw and Wilson, who made efforts to beat Burt Lake’s keeper to the far post.

“We’ve had issues with blasting away and hoping it goes in the net,” Burda said. “We’ve talked about taking some heat off the shot and trying to beat the keeper. They started falling in tonight. Hopefully we can get one of those against Glen Lake.”

The Comets will get a fourth crack at their cross-county nemeses (15-4-2) in Suttons Bay today at 7 p.m.

Leland put together a pair of inspired performances against the Lady Lakers in their two most recent meetings, dropping a 1-0 decision at Glen Lake on April 24 and a 3-1 game decided in overtime at Hancock Field on May 10.

“We don’t quite have the personnel they do, but it’s turned into a big rivalry,” said Burda, whose team also lost 3-0 to Glen Lake at the Hart Invitational on April 15. “Everybody steps up.”

The winner of tonight’s match will take on either No. 6 Harbor Springs or No. 7 Elk Rapids tomorrow in the district final, which is slated to kick off in Suttons Bay at 7 p.m.

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