LISBON — With one matchup against a top rival in the MVC already in the rear view mirror, the Lisbon Greyhounds were still in search of their first win of the 2013 fall campaign.

Mission accomplished.

Arianna Kahler scored twice and Bailey Cutler and Olivia Harrington added one each as the Greyhounds held serve on their home field for a 4-1 win over Telstar on Monday.

“We know that everyone wants to beat us, so we know we have to work that much harder,” Kahler said. “It’s scary to know that everyone is trying that much harder.”

Lisbon battled Spruce Mountain to a 1-1 deadlock on opening day, making Monday’s win its first as defending Class C state champion.

“You never know what you’re going to get, especially early in the season,” Lisbon coach Julie Wescott said. “(Telstar has) gotten better, they have a veteran group returning. Last year’s completely cancelled out. It’s a new year and you have to go in and respect every opponent like they’re going to come in and beat you.”

The Rebels missed the playoffs a year ago for the first time in veteran coach Gail Wight’s tenure with the team. Already she’s seeing signs of a turnaround after a win over senior-laden Dirigo and a closer-than-last-year loss at Lisbon.

“They’re very encouraged by the score today,” Wight said. “They’ve talked about some of the things that they did that contributed to the score. They’re seeing things that they’re doing that they can fix. That’s a huge improvement.”

But while the Rebels saw things they could fix, the Greyhounds (1-0-1) saw things they could exploit. Using speed, angled passing and a tenacity down low, they ran out to a 2-0 lead in the first half on goals from Kahler and Cutler.

Kahler’s came at the end of a penalty corner opportunity with an assist from Harrington, and then Kahler earned the helper on Cutler’s tally when she started another penalty corner and fed Cutler for the drive from the top of the circle.

“I think our communication has improved a lot,” Kahler said. “We’ve been working on that.”

Kahler netted her second of the game on a short rebound after a long ball come into the circle from nearly 35 yards away. Telstar keeper Hali Barter kicked the ball aside, but right to Kahler, who pounded it home for a 3-0 lead.

“We came out really flat against Spruce Mountain in the first half, so we wanted a better start,” Wescott said. “We did better at that (Monday).”

The Rebels scored their second goal in as many games shortly thereafter when Sadie Ellsworth tipped a Becca Howard drive past Lisbon keeper Stevie Charest.

“They’re moving the ball better; they’re moving to their teammates better,” Wight said. “It’s basic, but they’re dodging better now, trying to move to open space better.”

The goal was a sign to Lisbon to wake up.

“After they got that goal, we knew we had to step it up, because they got fired up,” Kahler said. “It scares us because we know they’re not going to let up.”

“Sometimes I felt last year we had a tendency to get too comfortable,” Wescott said. “We’ve talked about that, and you could hear the girls on the sidelines after that happened, it was like, ‘OK, time to refocus and pay a little bit more attention and get back on it.'”

Harrington capped a scramble in front with 2:11 to play in the game to cap the scoring and cement the victory.

Telstar returns to action Wednesday at Oak Hill, while Lisbon will host Dirigo, also on Wednesday.


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