Last season, Bermudian Springs broke Fairfield’s iron grip on the YAIAA-3 in girls’ soccer by sharing the division title after the Knights had captured four consecutive crowns.
Fast forward to the present, and the Eagles have placed themselves all alone atop the table following a 3-0 victory to complete a season sweep on Thursday at Robert E. Finefrock Field in Fairfield.
Berm (13-2, 11-0) took the first meeting between the teams in overtime, 1-0, on Sept. 23.
As time ran out on Thursday, the Eagles’ celebration on the field was rather subdued, given the accomplishment.
“We worked hard and we’re proud to get it,” senior co-captain Bailey Oehmig said of winning the title. “We’re excited, but we didn’t want to be disrespectful to them. They’re a great team.”
Bermudian head coach Jeff Hamon added, “You always like to be a solo champion, not a co-champion. They’re a great program and we’re very proud of our accomplishment.”
Oehmig netted all three of her side’s tallies in the match to push her season goal count to 22. She has served as the fulcrum for the Eagles all season long.
“Bailey makes our offense go. She leads the team in goals and assists, a lot of what we do runs through her,” Hamon said. “That said, we have a great defense, too.”
The Eagles have recorded eight shutouts on the season and have outscored division opponents, 50-8.
In the early going, neither team was able to mount much of a threat, as the first 15 or were contested mainly in the middle third of the pitch.
Then Oehmig got loose in the attacking third and let fly with a rip from 20 yards out that found the back of the net at the 22:35 mark of the opening half.
“I think both teams were a little nervous and feeling each other out early,” Oehmig said. “But once we got going, we got more aggressive.”
Fairfield (10-3, 10-2) failed to register a shot on goal in the opening half and the Knights’ best chance to level the match came when Emma Dennison hit the right side of the net from 15 yards out with 2:47 to play until the break.
Oehmig doubled the visitors’ edge when she scored off an assist from Hannah Chenault with 34:20 remaining in the match. It was a horizontal pass from left to center that Oehmig popped in from 25 yards out to the top shelf in the right corner.
The hosts did have a chance to halve the deficit when they finally got a shot on goal with 29:03 to play. It came when Maddy Fulgham redirected a corner from Dennison, but Berm keeper Payton Feeser was on top of it to keep the margin at 2-0.
Whatever drama may have been left went away when Oehmig scored off of a direct kick from 30 yards out with 5:39 to go. She went top shelf to the right side, from the right side.
“We were finally able to relax a little bit after we went up by three,” Oehmig said. “But not completely, until the last minute, because they’re too dangerous to let down against.”
Shots on goal (4-4) and corners (2-2) were both even.
In the District 3 power rankings, Fairfield sits in second in Class 1A, while Berm is 7th in 2A.
Berm will look to wrap up an undefeated division slate when it plays at Littlestown (2-14, 2-9) on Saturday at 10 a.m. Fairfield is finished with its regular season schedule and both the Eagles and Knights will play in the YAIAA Tournament quarterfinals on Tuesday.
Follow Tom Sixeas on Twitter at @TomSixeas
Bermudian Springs 1 2 — 3
Fairfield 0 0 — 0
Goals: BS-Bailey Oehmig 3. Assists: BS-Hannah Chenault. Shots: BS-4; F-4. Corners: BS-2; F-2. Saves: BS-Payton Feeser (4); F-Sophia Orndorff (1)