Lady Warriors soccer shows progress despite loss

Published 10:50 pm Tuesday, September 8, 2015


by Bryce Phillips

Star Staff

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The Sullivan South Lady Rebels used a persistent attack to capture a 7-0 win over Happy Valley in conference play Tuesday on the Lady Warriors’ home turf.

Happy Valley head coach Eddie Morrell’s positive attitude after Tuesday evening’s match did not match a coach whose team just lost, but Morrell felt there were things to be proud of in his second-year soccer squad.

“Last year, this was a 14-1 game,” Morrell said. “They cut the goal differential by seven. They have come a long, long way. They don’t realize it, but the score board doesn’t always show your improvement.

“I couldn’t be any prouder of the girls for the most part.”

The excited coach, however, did see some things the Lady Warriors need to work on, he said.
“We have to talk to each other more,” Morrell said. “We have got to take care of each other on the field. Let them know when there is a man on. Let them know when there is an open lane to pass. All of this is going to fall into place really quick.”

With the Lady Rebels, who fired roughly 30 shots, attacking consistently, the Lady Warriors’ back field had to stay on their toes. Leading the goal protection was Happy Valley goalkeeper Carley Tribble, who recorded roughly 25 saves on the night.

“She was huge,” Morrell said about Tribble’s game play. “You can’t expect a keeper to be isolated and catch everything that comes near her. But when she had the support she needed, she was unstoppable.”

Even though they did not score, the Lady Warriors did create some opportunities, taking 11 shots.

“We were able to get on their side of the field often, and that did not happen last year,” Morrell said. “Last year, we were cut off at half field. They are learning to get that ball up there and make some aggressive runs.”

Last Thursday, the Lady Warriors played what Morrell feels is the best match yet, when they were able to grab a 2-2 draw with Unicoi County High School. Both of Happy Valley’s goals during the close match came from the foot of Morgan Mallasch.

“It shouldn’t have been a draw,” Morrell said. “We outplayed them in every facet. We let a goal slip through that shouldn’t have slipped. We played amazing. We had 14 shots on goal. We had 26 saves.”

During Tuesday’s match, the Lady Rebels were able to grab three goal in the first half, with the first coming from Sullivan South’s Sierra Deering, who booted one in at the seven-minute mark.

In the second half, the Lady Rebels (7-2, 3,1) posted four more goals, with the last three coming from South’s Bri Watlington.

“Bri responded in the second half,” South coach Keith Parker said. “She gave us good effort. Parker, even though his squad left Happy Valley with a win, was down about somethings he saw Tuesday.

“The whole team was lackadaisical in the first half,” he said. “We were to worried about other things besides playing.”

On Thursday, the Lady Rebels will travel to Dobyns-Bennet, while the Lady Warriors host Unicoi.

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