45th District Girls Soccer: Lady Pats bow out in semis

Published 11:21 am Thursday, October 18, 2018

DANVILLE — The Lincoln County High School girls soccer team saw the curtain fall on its season last Tuesday in the semifinal round of the Girls 45th District Soccer Tournament at Danville High School.

The game was locked in a scoreless battle for the first 30 minutes, with both teams having few clear chances to take a lead. But the host Lady Admirals pushed in two goals before the half then tallied seconds into the second half to set them on course for a 5-2 victory and a berth in the district final.

Lady Patriot seniors Maddy Boyle and Raelyn Amon both scored in their final high school game, but not before Danville (9-6-1) had built a 3-0 cushion.

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“The girls never gave up and played with heart the entire game,” Lincoln coach Wendy Estes said. “Having zero goals at halftime, two seniors, Maddy Boyle and Raelyn Amon, were able to connect shots in the second half, giving Lincoln two on the scoreboard – still falling short of a very strong Danville team.”

Lara Akers ended the 30-minute defensive standoff when she broke free from the Lady Patriots’ offsides trap and scored into the corner of the net. The Lady Admirals were back in goal just seven minutes later, with Abbie Hibbs getting the second goal of the game after capitalizing on a miscommunication in the Lincoln defense.

The 2-0 score stood at halftime.

It took only a matter of seconds into the second half for Danville to push its lead to 3-0. Hibbs scored her second goal of the game just 18 seconds into the half after Akers dropped a ball to her in the box.

The Lady Patriots got on the scoreboard midway through the second half, with Boyle getting a shot past Lady Admiral goalkeeper Grace Gaffney to make it 3-1.

Kailyn Wilcher’s right foot helped end the Lady Patriots’ shot at a rally, as she scored from 35 yards away on a free kick near the sideline. Her shot curled over Lincoln’s Dallis Brown in goal and into the side netting. Ashley Rankin then followed with a shot past Brown to extend Danville’s lead to 5-1.

Amon pounced on a bobbled ball in the Lady Admirals’ box late in the game to finish the scoring.

“I was proud of the effort and determination that the girls displayed as we found ourselves playing a defensive game to offset Danville’s speed, and overall fell short on the scoreboard, which often doesn’t measure all elements of a game,” Estes said.

Lincoln finishes the season with a 6-10 record, a marked improvement from last season’s finish.

“We knew we had worked really hard through conditioning and over the season to become a better team and increase our success,” Estes said. “Even falling short in the district game against Danville, we validated that success. We have become a better team.”

“As we sat in the circle on the field after the game, we focused on the accomplishments of our seasons,” she added. “We focused on how we improved our season record to a record of 6-9 from 2-14. We focused on how much individual players had improved skills and endurance, which showed through our defense that was able to keep a very strong (Danville) team to five goals compared to 10 last season. And, most importantly, we already began setting team goals for next season.”

Note: Boyle County successfully defended its title in the 45th District Tournament championship game, edging out a 1-0 win over Danville for its fourth straight title win.