One shot short… Lady Cyclones valiant battle ends in a tough loss to Central, 2-1
BY IVAN SANDERS
STAR SPORTS EDITOR
BLOUNTVILLE – It was going to be a historical match regardless of the outcome during the District 1-A/AA girls soccer semifinal at Sullivan Central’s Bernie Webb Field between the Elizabethton Lady Cyclones and the Central Lady Cougars.
The historical part came from the fact it would be the last girl’s soccer match played on the field as Central, South, and North will be combining into one large school next school year.
With that being in the back of their minds, the Lady Cougars did just enough to slip past the Lady Cyclones who put up a valiant fight down three players including two starters as Central pulled out a tight-fisted 2-1 victory to advance to the district final opposite Greeneville.
The Lady Cougars pulled out front 1-nil in the first half when Lady Cougar Riley Patrick lofted a kick just out of the reach of Lady Cyclone goalie
Cadie Digby for the early lead at 4:56 mark of the first half.
From that point, the Lady Cyclones were the aggressors with an opportunity to score on at least three charges toward the Lady Cougar goal only to be turned away at the last moment and failed to score in the first 40 minutes go to the break down by the same 1-nil score.
The Lady Cyclones finally managed to even the score in the second half when senior Siana Robey booted a penalty kick past the Lady Cougar goalkeeper to even the score at 1-1 with 35:04 to play in the contest.
With the game still up in the air, the Lady Cyclones got caught playing the ball side to side allowing the Lady Cougar offense to slide past into an opening as Jessie Lane worked the ball into the goal at the 54:43 mark of the contest to give Central the advantage.
The Lady Cyclones kept battling but just couldn’t manage to push the ball into the net the final 25:17 as the Lady Cougars advanced and the Elizabethton’s season was brought to a close.
“We came out and started really well in the second half and had the ball forward and everything and then it just kind of stopped,” said Lady Cyclone head coach Bill McClay.
“We started to chasing the ball which led to that goal. I could have used a timeout which we don’t have but as you could see I had five players focusing on the ball instead of keeping their shape and being aware of where the other team was and we had done such a good job of that especially after we gave up the goal in the first half.
“Given the tribulations that we have had, I feel we have perservered throughout so I think once the girls get past this and I get past this and realize that was pretty good we will have some things to work on. The seniors all stepped up tonight.”