By David Tuma, Publisher
The Lady Tigers played the first 25 minutes of the first half into a brutal headwind. Against the wind, unable to pass in the air, the Lady Tigers struggled moving the ball forward in the first half. Some of their passes actually ended up going backwards. Most curved off the mark. Belton fell behind 2-0 and it could have actually been much worse. Their three forward system was not meant to play into a 30 mile-per-hour wind.
The game was just a warm up for the playoffs for both Hendrickson and Belton. Hendrickson advanced to the Regional Finals last season. They moved the ball well and played with coordination. Belton, with two starters out, struggled in the first half.
Hendrickson, utlizing the wind, scored at 37:38. They added a corner kick at 34:13. Harlie Wiley had a huge stop at 31:42. Wiley blocked a cross and kept a Hendrickson player from shooting point black at the Lady Tigers goal.
Alexis Mack was out most of the first half. Wiley and Caroline Stegall combined for a stop. Rachel Ramm had a save. Lady Tigers’ goalie Gracie Green had a save at 17:56. Green added another save at 15:23. Tiarra Hodges had the only shot on goal at 14:20. With the wind finally dying down, the Lady Tigers gave up a goal at 7:22.
The Hawks played the first half in a 3-1-4-2 alignment and controlled the midfield. The wind wasn’t much of a factor in the second half. Both teams played some great soccer.
Stegall drew a foul at the top of the box and converted the kick to make it 2-1. Mack stopped a breakaway at 31:54. Erica Anderson had a stop at 30:20. Mack off a drive from the defensive end set up Wiley for a long-range shot that was stopped. A Lady Tigers defender ran into Green and the ball rolled slowly into the goal making it 3-1. Allison Navarro drove 50-yards and scored to make it 3-2 with 15:40 left. Mack set up Navarro at 10:35. Hodges hit a cross at 9:23. Mattie Krenek had a shot blocked. Cassandra Grimaldo set up a corner kick.