SALEM -- For a Gloucester girls soccer team that entered this season with lofty expectations, an 0-4-2 start to the season was far from what it envisioned.
But through that difficult stretch -- which hit rock bottom last week with a 5-1 loss to Danvers -- coach Alex White preached that continued hard work would yield results.
For the second straight game, White’s words rang true for the Fishermen, as they overcame sloppy conditions at Bertram Field to earn their second win of the season with a dominant 2-0 victory over Salem last night.
“It was frustrating because I just knew that we could play better, but at the same time, nothing was going our way,” White said. “We hit more crossbars and posts than you could imagine. The Danvers game was just mind-boggling. I thought it was a lot closer than 5-1.
“That was really a moment where we sat down with the girls and said, ‘When things start going our way, you’re going to see improvement. We need to continue to play hard, it’s just not in our favor right now.’”
For at least one night, White was right. Despite a mediocre first half, Gloucester entered halftime with a 1-0 lead thanks to forward Kali Cook, who headed a Melodie Orrell cross past the Salem goalkeeper to put the Fishermen ahead.
And after a much-improved second half, where the Fishermen’s attack could only be stifled by the impressive play of Salem’s goalkeeper, Cook broke through again, sliding a rebound from a blocked Bianca Giacalone shot into the back of the net to give the Fishermen their second win in four days.
“It’s difficult in the weather,” said White, whose team is used to the smooth turf field at its home for the season, Gordon College. “Going back from turf to grass to turf to grass, especially with the weather, is tough. And I thought the first half, we didn’t play as well as we could have, but I thought the second half we really stepped our game up.”