With a potent offensive player sidelined with a leg injury, the Andover Girls Soccer team couldn’t match Loomis Chaffee’s goal scoring touch, falling 4-0. It was clear from the opening whistle that Loomis was determined to avenge their 1-0 loss to Andover in the NEPSAC Championship Game. However, Andover matched Loomis’s intensity at the start. Within the first five minutes, Andover Co-Captain Emily Little ’09 sprained her MCL, forcing her to miss the remainder of the game. The loss of Little left Andover without one of its key offensive threats. Shortly afterwards, Loomis snuck its first shot into the Andover net and jumped out to an early lead. Andover recovered quickly and there was a significant amount of play in both sides of the field throughout the remainder of the first half. Down by only a goal, Andover ended the half still hopeful to come away with the victory. The second half of play began a bit like the first with Loomis’s fearless determination trumping Andover’s agility and skill. Right at the start, a Loomis offender crossed the ball to a teammate who was able to squeeze in another goal for their team. After the second goal, Andover’s defense strengthened tremendously. Goalkeeper Alex Farrell ’10 kept the team Andover in the game, robbing Loomis on some surefire scoring chances by making several tremendous saves. Despite the tireless efforts of Andover’s offense, it never created any successful scoring opportunities. Meanwhile, Loomis’s offense scored two more times at the end of the second half. In the end, Andover was unable to come back, especially after unexpectedly losing Little, a key starting player. Co-captain Coppinger ’09 said, “Although they did outplay us, the game was closer than the score indicated.” Andover’s season record is now 1-2. Although the loss was discouraging, Andover took some positives out of the road trip to Loomis. The loss of Little gave the other Andover players a chance to see more game action, giving them valuable experience against a strong opponent. Co-Captain Catherine Coppinger echoed this sentiment and said, “Since the team is dealing with a lot of injuries, more players are being given the opportunity to step up and try new positions or have larger roles on the field.” Although universal disappointment swept over the entire team, Andover looked to the future. “Though Loomis was a tough loss, we’re really focusing on and determined to beat Brooks on Thursday,” returning player Carolyn Brown ’09 remarked. The team is fired up for Thursday’s game because it is the very first home game of the season. Brooks, Andover’s other NEPSAC rival, is one of the best teams in the league this year, and one team that Andover unexpectedly lost to last season. However, most members of the Andover team still think they have a good shot at beating Brooks. Coppinger added, “I am confident that the team on the field Thursday [against Brooks] will be a strong one.” Following the Brooks game, the team will face Tabor Academy on Saturday, under the lights at Phelps Stadium.