Girls soccer secures top spots in tournaments

Sophomore+Sarah+Jane+Paddock+lunges+towards+the+ball+during+the+Spring+Hill+Lady+Panthers+Invitational.+The+girls+varsity+soccer+team+participated+in+this+tournament+Jan.+5.

Photo by Ashlyn Sander

Sophomore Sarah Jane Paddock lunges towards the ball during the Spring Hill Lady Panthers Invitational. The girls varsity soccer team participated in this tournament Jan. 5.

Story by Eleanor Schroeder and Celeste Anderson

The girls varsity soccer team won first and third place in two consecutive tournaments. Each tournament lasted three days during which the team played five games per tournament.

On Jan. 5-7, the Lady Tigers competed in the Spring Hill Lady Panthers Invitational in Longview. The tournament was based on points, with no semifinals or finals, so the Lady Tiger’s five wins put them on top.

They defeated Jacksonville 2-1 in a close game and the home team, Spring Hill, 3-0 on Thursday. On Friday, the Lady Tigers beat Kilgore JV 5-0 and Kilgore varsity 2-0 in a weather shortened match.

Needing merely a tie to secure the tournament victory, they won 3-0 over Nacogdoches to dominate what was named the “Eskimo Cup.”

“At the Longview tournament, we won every game, but more importantly we began our season in a positive way,” junior Chloe Coake said. “Every player contributed everything they could the whole weekend. This win will give us confidence and momentum to carry us through our season.”

The next weekend, the Lady Tigers travelled to Greenville for the Greenville Lion Invitational soccer tournament. This tournament conversely based on points for the first two days with the top seats of each group being placed into semifinals and then finals on Saturday.

In their first game of the tournament, the team tied a good Little Elm 0-0. On Friday, they beat Hillcrest 3-1 and Greenville JV 12-0 during which Texas coach played only 9 field players to give the JV team an advantage.

Seated second in their bracket after the team they tied, the Lady Tigers faced North Forney in the semifinals. After regulation time, the score was 0-0. Needing a determined winner, the game moved to two overtimes during which no one scored. During a penalty kick shoot-out, the Tigers lost 5-4 stealing their chance to play in the finals.

In the third place match, the girls beat a Greenville team they will face in district 4-0, giving them a third place victory.

“Playing 10 games in a one week span takes a lot of endurance, but we pushed through as a team,” junior Emma Wolf said. “Throughout the cold and rainy weather, we played hard and scored 34 goals, only giving up 2 in turn. I could not be more proud of my teammates and I’m looking forward to district.”

The team travels to Shreveport this weekend for a scrimmage against Airline. Their first district game will be held on Jan. 27 against Marshall at Grimm.