Oct. 16, 2012 — Arguably, the region’s best turnaround story just got a little better.
Last Thursday night in Owingsville, the Rowan County girls soccer team continued its ascent toward a potential regional crown, defeating Fleming County, 4-0, to claim championship gold for the 61st District.
“This is a big step for us,” said Rowan County Head Coach Wallace. “We’ve really been passing the ball extremely well, and we felt that is something we were going to have to do in order to be successful in the regionals next week. We will enjoy this one here tonight, because next week we’re going to have to be on top of our game.”
After destroying first-round opponent Bath County, 12-0, the Lady Vikings took awhile to gain their footing in the championship bout.
After several good looks, the big green finally lit up the scoreboards when sophomore Ally Hackney capitalized on a breakaway opportunity to score the game's first goal.
A strong performance inside the nets from Fleming County’s Paige Hurst continued in the second half, beginning with a highlight save on a shot by eventual tournament MVP Hannah Bandura.
Junior midfielder Deanna May broke through Hurst’s iron curtain shortly after to give the Lady Vikings a 2-0 advantage, assisted by Hackney.
Opportunities were sparse for the Lady Panthers thanks to a tremendous defensive effort from the Lady Vikings, including senior Amy Roe.
At the 68th minute, freshman Montannah Minor converted on another goal for the girls in green, pushing the lead to 3-0.
The proverbial icing on the cake came shortly before time expired when senior Lady Viking Haley Devaney launched one from deep midfield, finding the back of the net, dotting a exclamation point on the victory for Rowan County.
Following the win, Wallace and Rowan County were fortunate enough to receive a first round bye in the 16th Region drawings on Saturday.
Set to play the winner of Greenup County vs. Ashland Blazer on Wednesday evening, Wallace spoke about what his team planned to work on in the coming week.
“We’ll have to keep working on our short passing game,” Wallace said. “I thought we did better in that aspect, especially in the Bath County game. But, like I said, no disrespect to the teams in our district, but the other teams in this regional plays at a little faster pace. We feel we are ready for the challenge.”
The Morehead News will have more on the Lady Vikings 16th Region tournament action in Friday’s edition of sports.
Grant Stevens can be reached at email@example.com or by telephone at 784-4116.