Blue Devils down Brooklyn

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Paige Westerburg

Alex Adams, Marisa Silvestro and Paige Westerburg each scored goals to lead Independence to a 3-0 win over visiting Brooklyn on Monday.

The three goals were the most scored by the Blue Devils since a 6-4 win over Wellington on Sept. 24.

“We were kind of in an offensive funk,” said Independence head coach Bryan Less. “I met with the offense (on Sunday) for an hour and we just did different options for building the ball in the midfield and different options for runs in the offensive third. I talked about just playing dynamic soccer and that’s making straight lines and doing different things.”

After scoring just two goals in their last three games, the Blue Devils came out on Monday and pounded the net.

“Our shooting percentage was bad,” Less said. “We only had three goals and we had well over 30 shots. They were really quality shots. We probably had 10-12 shots in the box in the center of the field but we were putting them right at the keeper. We had some really good runs to get there.”

Adams gave the Blue Devils a 1-0 lead in the first half and Silvestro scored early in the second half to make it 2-0.

Westerburg closed out the scoring when she punched in a loose ball off a Silvestro shot.

“I held at the top of the box and a shot deflected back out,” Westerburg said. “I ran on and was able to get a shot off with my left foot and put it inside the left post.”

The Blue Devils collected their sixth clean sheet of the season.

“The defense was solid,” Less said. “Elise Nelson had some really nice passes out of her outside back spot and Erin Zygmunt and Heather Patacca did a nice job of cleaning things up.”

Independence improved to 9-5-1 on the year.

The Blue Devils close out the regular season at Fairview on Saturday needing just one more win to reach 10 wins in back-to-back seasons for the first time in school history.

“I think that the win really helped to boost our confidence with the playoffs coming just around the corner,” Westerburg said. “It’s an exciting opportunity after falling short on the (Chagrin Valley Conference) championship.”

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The creator and publisher of OhioVarsity.com, Hare has covered high school sports in Northeast Ohio since 1997. He began as a correspondent for the Lake County News Herald, where he contributed until 2011, primarily covering high school football and wrestling. In 1999, Hare began writing for IrishIllustrated.com, a member of the Scout.com network of high school and college sports web sites. He focuses on covering Notre Dame football recruiting. OhioVarsity.com was created in 2004 and was a member of the Rivals.com network until 2012. The site's original purpose was to cover Ohio high school football and recruiting news but since has grown to cover all sports and to provide sports information services to high school athletic programs and individual teams. Hare attended Willoughby South High School through the middle of his senior year, then graduated from Berkshire High School in Burton in 1986. He played football, wrestled and was an all-Geauga county baseball player (1986). He lives in Chardon with his wife Paulette and their children.