OAK PARK HEIGHTS — To ensure the Suburban East Conference title would be on the line when Stillwater travels to White Bear Lake later this week, the Ponies first had to take care of business against Roseville on Tuesday at Pony Stadium.
Stillwater held up its end while dispatching the Raiders 3-1 to extend its unbeaten streak to 10 games. The Ponies (6-1-1 SEC, 10-3-2) trail White Bear Lake (6-0-2, 12-1-2) — which defeated Forest Lake 4-2 in overtime on Tuesday — by just one point heading into Thursday’s regular season finale.
“Obviously we need to get two wins this week,” Ponies coach Mike Huber said. “Obviously it’s not too often you have an opportunity to win the conference by yourself.”
Shelby Litchy sparked the Ponies early with a goal at 7:22 of the first half. Jaime Purdie delivered a crossing pass that Litchy settled and drilled in the net from eight yards out for a 1-0 lead.
Maddie Schaak notched the first of her two goals midway through the first half after driving home a shot from 18 yards on a through pass from Robyne Tupa. Schaak extended Stillwater’s lead to 3-0 less than two minutes into the second half with another shot that found the net from long range after the Raiders failed to clear the ball.
“In the last three or four games, Maddie has scored almost all of her goals from outside of 18 yards,” Huber said. “She has a shot and she can hit them.”
Rachel Berkas spoiled Stillwater’s shutout bid after scoring midway through the second half, but the Ponies were not seriously challenged while holding a 17-5 advantage in shots on goal.
“They didn’t have a lot of good chances and we, especially in the first half, were pressuring them quite a bit,” Huber said. “We were on their end a majority of the time and eventually when you put pressure on the goalie, good things are going to happen.
“Today was a pretty balanced effort by a lot of folks. A lot of folks got involved offensively and it was a team effort tonight.”
Roseville 0 1 — 1
Stillwater 2 1 — 3
St — 7:22 — Shelby Litchy (Jaime Purdie)
St — 23:04 — Maddie Schaak (Robyne Tupa)
St — 1:44 — Schaak (unassisted)
Ros — 18:20 — Rachel Berkas (unassisted)
Shots on goal — Ros: 5; St: 17.
Corner kicks — Ros: 0; St: 9.
Fouls — Ros: 4; St: 6.
Goalie saves — Ros: Hana El Afandi (55 minutes) 9 and Sarah Caldow (25 minutes) 5; St: Megan Holthaus (60 minutes) 3 and Christina Bartingale (20 minutes) 1.