Girls Soccer: Lady Tigers fall in regional semifinals
Generally speaking, the first goal scored in a high school soccer playoff game is usually the game-winner.
Scoring two unanswered goals to start a playoff game, in many cases, is as good as sealing the win.
That was the case Thursday night, despite the Douglas girls soccer teams best efforts to prove otherwise, as Reno’s second goal in a four-minute span proved to be the death-knell to a promising Tiger season.
Reno parlayed the 2-0 lead into a 4-1 regional semifinal win at Damonte Ranch and will play Saturday at 2 p.m. at Damonte Ranch for the regional championship.
The Huskies, who surprised Manogue 3-0 in the first round of the playoffs on Tuesday, struck in the 16th minute against Douglas, scoring on a breakaway with a ground shot to the right post.
Reno got the first three shots of the game off, and on its fourth took complete command. A Reno midfielder chipped the ball high in the air from the sideline 20 yards out from the net. The wind carried the shot nicely as the ball dropped in just under the crosssbar and just over Douglas keeper Corryne Millett’s fingertips for the 2-0 lead.
Millett was injured on the play, and after a 30-minute delay, she was taken off the field via ambulance with an apparent neck injury. Douglas coach Lorraine Fitzhugh said Millett would likely be OK, but that the medical staff was taking every precaution.
That forced Tiger forward Lexie Weaver into net, taking one of the Tigers’ most potent offensive weapons out of the field.
Still, 10 minutes later, Freshman McKenna Kynett fought through the Reno defense to position herself for a breakaway and scored. With the goal, Kynett tied both the state 4A and school records for goals in a season at 29 (Ally Freitas, 2008).
Despite Reno focusing most of its starters onto the defensive side, Douglas nearly tied the game up seven minutes later when Kynett again got free on the right side and blasted a shot that the Reno keeper was just able to deflect to the near side.
For her part, Weaver stayed strong in the net, deflecting a one-on-one chance in the 39th minute and adding another three saves in the second half.
Reno, though, punched in a pair of second half goals, in the 56th and 70th minutes, and allowed just one more solid Douglas scoring chance, off the foot of Caitlin Jones.
Douglas finished the season 17-4 overall.