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HUMMSELSTOWN>> Their first meeting needed overtime to net a game-winner. Yesterday's clash hardly required a half. For that's what the combination of heavy rain, a freshman goalie and a tough road test will often bring.

Palmyra girls' soccer watched its five-game win streak end unceremoniously at Lower Dauphin in a 3-1 defeat Tuesday. The Cougars (7-4, 4-4 Mid-Penn Keystone) received a late score from senior Hanah Soucy, but fell into a two-goal deficit by halftime from which they would never recover. The Falcons (7-1, 6-1) jumped ahead immediately on Rachel Clouser's goal in the second minute, before Rory Klingensmith later added another in unassisted fashion.

Palmyra's freshman keeper Megan Frazier had recently been forced into action with the departure of senior Skylar Howard. She finished with one save.

"She's got some games under her belt, but this was her first intense one. So I can't be mad," Cougars coach Katie Stafiej said of Frazier. "She's such a hard worker and she's a freshman, so she's young. She's still trying to build that chemistry with our back line."

A lack of defensive chemistry arguably led to Clouser's goal, which unfolded as a soft touch inside the box that rolled by Frazier.

"Meg had called for it and Hannah (Bowman) backed off, but it was poor perception on both parts," Stafiej said. Our defense should've swiped that, so it's unfortunate, but you have goals like that."

Prior to Klingensmith's later score, Palmyra evened play through strong, consistent possession from its midfield. Soucy created a pair of chances in the 29th minute, the latter a quality cross front the right flank that nearly found a home at the foot of Sophie Wagner, who had sped back on a counterattack with Soucy. Those counterattacks were of particular focus for Lower Dauphin, which returned to the win column after a loss Saturday to Hershey.

"It was a good win to get," Falcons coach Nic Amici said." "They've got a great midfield and had some good threatening counterattacks we had to be very careful of."

Quinn McMonagle tacked on the final Lower Dauphin score of the night in the 63rd minute, while the Cougars overtook the lead in the shots department. None of their attempts on net would best Falcons keeper Maryn Towbridge, however, until Soucy struck shortly before the final gun.

"We had opportunities and good teams capitalize on those opportunities. They're a good team, they got three chances and they got all three," Stafiej said. "Something we struggle with still is finishing, but we're building on it."

Lower Dauphin 3, Palmyra 1

Pal01—1LD21—3

First half — 1. LD, Rachel Clouser (Savannah Mushinski), 2:00. 2. LD, Rory Klingensmith, 35:00.

Second half — 3. LD, Quinn McMonagle (Nikki Saad), 63:00. 4. P, Hanah Soucy (Hannah Bowman), 89:00.

Shots on goal — P 6, LD 4.

Corners — P 2, LD 1.

Goalies — P: Megan Frazier (1 saves). LD: Maryn Towbridge (4).

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