Castle freshman goalkeeper
shuts out Kalaheo

By Jack Danilewicz
Special to the Star-Bulletin

To hear Castle freshman goal-keeper Ashley Kanda tell it, pre-game jitters were nothing compared to what she felt during the game itself last night in Kaneohe, where the Knights hosted Kalaheo.

"I was nervous whenever they shot," Kanda said with a smile.

An injury to Castle's regular goalkeeper, Christine Everington, rushed Kanda into action. She stood tall in net in only her second appearance of the year, turning away 14 Kalaheo shots in lifting the Knights to a 1-0 victory.

"She has great athletic ability, but we were kind of concerned about the high shots," Castle coach Mark Kane said. "She responded tonight."

The win, coupled with Kailua's 1-0 victory over Kahuku, lifted the Knights (6-0-3) into sole possession of first place in the Oahu Interscholastic Association's East Division. Kahuku (6-2-1) and Castle meet Saturday in the regular season finale for both teams. Kalaheo fell to 6-1-2 and into second place.

Offensively, Castle freshman Lindsey Watanabe drove the Knights across the finish line. Her game-winning shot changed direction after striking Kalaheo's Breton Fraser and subsequently eluded Mustang goalkeeper Lindsey Peck, who had been moving into proper position.

"It was kind of tricky," Watanabe said. "I didn't really see it all. Coach (Kane) had been telling us to dribble more, and I tried to take a few chances."

Added Kane: "We were telling them to try and take on those fullbacks and try and dribble by them because we have good dribblers. We just haven't always showed it, and tonight was a good time to show it. Towards the end, we finally started to take chances."

Kalaheo pressed the issue throughout the evening. The Mustangs had a golden opportunity to score midway through the second half when fleet-footed forward Anela Gonzales redirected a long pass from Hea Kane toward the net with her head. But with Kanda temporarily out of position, Castle teammate Lovey Walker headed the ball over the cross-bar and out of harm's way.

"I was lucky Lovey was in the goal when they shot the ball, and she headed it out," Kanda said.

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