“We’re both pretty young teams and it’s a journey,” said Glendale Coach Bob Zirovich, who got three goals from Anabel Beiki and two from Katren Ter-Oganesyan. “We’re learning and we’re getting better a little bit at a time.
“We took a few backward steps today, but in the end we came out.”
The final 4:30 of the match featured no scoring, as Hoover tried to find a game-tying goal.
Inside the final 1:30, Hoover and Glendale traded missed shots before the Nitros’ Jenny Lee came up with a big steal at mid-pool at the 1:00 mark.
Lori Multini swiped the ball right back for Hoover moments later, setting up a miss by the Tornadoes’ Irene Ismalyan that scraped the top of the goal with 18 seconds left.
Glendale tried to go for one more goal on a breakaway, but Hoover goalkeeper Atineh Sipanian came up with her sixth save on the play, albeit not with enough time for the Tornadoes to counter.
“We had a lot of wide-open shots,” said Hoover Coach Ara Oganesyan, whose team was also hunting for its first league win. “[It was] just nerves. Glendale held their composure pretty well, so, in the end, that’s what it was.”
After going ahead, 2-1, with four minutes left in the first quarter, Hoover (2-16, 0-6 in league) never trailed in the first half until a shot from halfway across the pool by Glendale’s Ter-Oganesyan put the Nitros up, 5-4, as the second quarter expired.
After scoring a 6-5 man advantage goal by Beiki about a minute into the second half, Glendale led by two most of the third quarter.
Beiki connected on a long rainbow shot from three quarters of the way down the pool to put Glendale (1-5 in league) up, 8-6, with just one second on the clock.
Jania Abramian, who was tied with Alisa Ovsepyan for a team-high in goals with three, answered Beiki’s bomb with a long-range goal of her own at the third-quarter buzzer to take Hoover into the fourth down by just one.
Beiki and Abramian traded goals again early in the fourth quarter to cap off the scoring.