FORTVILLE — For a team with lofty ambitions, Monday brought a must-win match for the Mt. Vernon girls soccer program.
The Marauders hosted Greenfield-Central — the defending sectional champ — in both teams’ Hoosier Heritage Conference opener.
The MV squad hasn’t won a sectional title since 1996 and coach Casey Dodd wasn’t sure when, or if, the program ever claimed a HHC crown.
But, after witnessing the Marauders’ 1-0 win Monday, Dodd believes the 2013 team is championship-capable.
“I think the confidence is already there for us,” Dodd said. “I think playing well in a game like this, that shows that confidence.
“But we have to make sure this isn’t the highlight of our season. This is just one more step that we take as we go along.”
The Marauders improved to 3-0 overall while G-C dropped to 0-3.
Part of the Marauders’ confidence this season stems from a veteran lineup that includes its top three scorers from a year ago. The 2012 leading scorer, Claudia Brown, was the difference Monday, booting the game’s lone goal to the upper right of G-C keeper Courtney Dunn on an assist from Emily McNab with 10 minutes, 54 seconds remaining in the contest.
Brown scored 14 goals for the Marauders in 14 games last year and she has four goals in just three matches this season. Brown, a junior, and New Palestine’s Amy Hilton share the early-season county scoring lead.
In a 2-0 win over Muncie Central Saturday, Brown and Brittany Sanders found the net, McNab had an assist and junior keeper Olivia Coleman didn’t allow a score.