Town Topics — Princeton's Weekly Community Newspaper Since 1946.
Vol. LXII, No. 40
 
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
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Post-Grad Star Collins Fitting In Well as Hun Girls’ Soccer Makes Progress

Bill Alden

Arielle Collins and her teammates on the Hun School girls’ soccer team were frustrated as they battled Little Flower (Pa.) last week.

Coming off a seven-goal outburst against Mercersburg in its previous outing, Hun found itself trailing gritty Little Flower 2-0 some 10 minutes into the game.

Post-graduate star Collins, though, wasn’t about to let the Raiders throw in the towel. The former Steinert High standout made run after run at the Little Flower goal, getting off several shots that just missed the mark.

Late in the game, Collins found the back of the net, burying a penalty kick chance to draw Hun within 2-1.

The Raiders kept the heat on, dominating possession in the last five minutes but couldn’t get the equalizer as they fell 2-1.

Afterward, Collins asserted that Hun ran out of time against a team it could have beaten.

“I thought we came out really slow; if we were playing our game, it could’ve been different,” said Collins.

“We played tough to the end. After that penalty kick, everybody wanted that second goal.”

Hun used the halftime break to figure out what they wanted to do.”I think at half, we finally got the chance to get to talk to each other and let each other know that you have to be here or there,” recalled Collins.

“The captains were talking, figuring things out and that’s definitely what helped out in the second half. Everyone was more together and on the same page.”

It didn’t take long for Collins to get on the same page upon her arrival at Hun.

“I felt like I have been playing here all four of my years,” said a smiling Collins.

“As soon as I came, everyone was real outgoing; treating me like I was a Hun student and everything. Everybody on the team is just like me, all outgoing and wild.”

Collins has developed a special connection with junior Blake Stockton who was moved to forward from midfield to help Hun form a dynamic one-two scoring punch.

“In the beginning, we weren’t up top together,” said Collins. “As soon as coach noticed that we were finding each other in practice, he moved Blake. He saw the connection before we even did and we finally found it and it was even better when we found it.”

For Collins, a record-setting scorer for the Steinert basketball team who came to Hun to help enhance her chances of playing hoops at the Division I level, getting one last season of soccer is a bonus.

“Even though soccer was always my second sport, I still loved playing it,” said Collins, who helped the Steinert soccer team win a sectional title last season.

“I just did it for fun; there was no objective other than just going out there and having a good time. So when Hun offered me a chance to play soccer, I was like why not, I play soccer, I love it and I might as well come and try to help another team if I can. It is like getting ready for basketball and having fun at the same time.”

Hun assistant coach Kelli McMahon is glad that Collins decided to go for one last season of soccer.

“Arielle is always working,” asserted McMahon, who was guiding the team in the absence of head coach Ken Stevenson.

“She makes the girls around her look better and play as a unit. Blake [Stockton] and Arielle are awesome together up top.”

McMahon acknowledged that the Raiders weren’t awesome in the early going against Little Flower.

“We just didn’t start out strong; we didn’t go after it from the start and that’s what you need to do,” said McMahon. “We just weren’t winning 50-50 balls, we weren’t going to the ball.”

While Hun couldn’t overcome its early deficit, McMahon is hoping that the team learned a lesson from the loss that will serve it well over the season.

“We could’ve won this game if we would’ve started from the beginning of the game,” added McMahon.

“The intensity was what we were missing. If we had the intensity, we would be in the game and the rest of it would come. It is disappointing and I hope that they think about this the next time.”

Collins, for her part, thinks that Hun will have the intensity it needs to have a big season.

“During preseason, we weren’t looking too strong,” said Collins, who will be looking to keep up her strong play when Hun plays at Pennington on October 2 and at Lawrenceville on October 4.

“Everyone was working hard and you could just tell that this team would be good with a couple more weeks of being together. I think this team is going to do well; I think this team is going to go far.”

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