UNIONVILLE — Two timely goals and a stingy defense were the ingredients the Community Viqueens needed to gain the upper hand as the Viqueens defeated the Cascade Lady Champions 2-0 in the …
UNIONVILLE — Two timely goals and a stingy defense were the ingredients the Community Viqueens needed to gain the upper hand as the Viqueens defeated the Cascade Lady Champions 2-0 in the finals of the District 6-A soccer championship Thursday night.
With a lively crowd and a spirited performance by both teams, the game did not disappoint after the teams split a pair of one-goal contests during the regular season.
Community (11-2-1) wasted little time getting on the scoreboard just two minutes into the game as Zoey Dixon placed a corner kick in front of the goal and Abby Murrill headed the ball into the net to put the Viqueens up 1-0.
The situation was nearly identical to the lone goal the Viqueens scored in their previous win over the Lady Champions in the regular season when Murrill headed in a goal three minutes into the game.
"It was like deja vu all over again for them again," Coach Chris Brothers of the Viqueens said.
The Viqueens peppered the goal for the first 20 minutes of the first half, but Cascade goalkeeper Claire Perry was true to the test as Community could not increase its advantage.
The Lady Champions started to find a rhythm and spent more time on the Viqueen end of the field in the next 20 minutes.
A hard shot on a direct kick by Eve Speirs narrowly went over the crossbar as Community took its 1-0 lead to the intermission.
With the Viqueens clinging to their lead, the play was turned up a notch in the second half by both teams.
It remained a one-goal game until Taylar Wessner got behind the Lady Champion defense after taking a pass from Murrill and dribbled the ball into the right set of the net to put Community up 2-0 with 14:46 remaining.
"We were able to get the long ball and get another one in that took a little pressure off," Brothers said.
It looked like the Lady Champions might get the break they needed to cut the Viqueen margin after Community was called for a handball in the goalie box with 10 minutes left.
The penalty kick by Speirs headed to the left of the goal, but Viqueen goalkeeper Carlie Blanton made the diving stop to preserve the Community two-goal lead.
Neither team could score in the final 10 minutes as the Viqueens took the win and the first-place hardware.
"It was hard 'til the end," Coach Wendy Williams of the Lady Champions said. "Both teams fought hard and we had some opportunities that were missed. We just couldn't get it in the back of the net."
"Our girls came out strong in the second half," Williams added. "Things didn't fall our way."
"It was great soccer," Brothers said. "It was a great effort by them and we matched their intensity."
The Viqueens continued their defensive prowess. Community has only allowed eight goals in its 14 games, and one goal in its last seven.
"Our defense has been amazing all season long but it was really big tonight," Brothers said.
Brothers was complimentary of the Viqueen crowd.
"I want to thank all the fan support tonight, especially the student body," Brothers said. "They were loud and proud."
With the win, Community will play host to Marion County Tuesday in the Region 3-A semifinals while Cascade will travel to Chattanooga School for the Arts & Sciences in the other semifinal. The winners will then play in the Region 3-A championship.
"We're taking it one game at a time," Williams said. "We're going to focus on Chattanooga and hopefully be back to play in the finals."
Cascade 0 0 — 0
Community 1 1 — 2
Cas — Abby Murrill goal on corner kick from Zoey Dixon (38:00).
Cas — Taylar Wessner goal from Murrill (14:46).
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