Girls soccer team earms Division II title |

Girls soccer team earms Division II title

by Chuck Smock

In a span of about three minutes Tuesday, the Douglas girls’ soccer team experienced a monumental two-goal swing against Carson at the DHS field.

The result was a 2-0 win over the Senators that secured the Division II title for the Tigers and dropped Carson’s record against Douglas to 0-10-5 in the last 15 games over a seven-year span.

Moments after the Senators failed to convert a penalty kick midway through the first half, Amber Gwinn scored the game-winning goal off a pass from Sarah Shearer that was flicked on by Abby Aldrich.

Senior Julia Spaulding gave the Tigers a little room to relax four minutes later when she one-touched a ball past a diving Pam Williams into the Carson net. Kali Schmidt set up the goal with a great cross, which again was diverted by Aldrich.

Douglas improved to 15-1-1 with the win over Carson. The 15 wins is a regular-season record for a DHS girls’ soccer team. The Tigers can tie their all-time mark of 16 wins in a season with a victory over Reno on Tuesday. A strong run in the playoffs will give the Tigers a shot at Northern 4A record (boys’ or girls’) of 18 wins in a season, which was established by the DHS boys last season.

“That was very satisfying,” Douglas coach Fred Schmidt said after the victory. “It was a very good team effort. This is probably as close as a team as we’ve been in a while.

“Everybody played and everybody contributed to the win. It wasn’t any one player.”

Douglas goalkeeper Ashley Sulprizio said the Tigers got a huge boost when Ali Bannister pulled her penalty-kick attempt wide left of the goal.

“That got me going personally and I think it picked up the rest of the team, too,” Sulprizio said. “My defense played great as usual.”

“The missed PK obviously was important, but I thought it was justice because I thought it was a quick whistle,” coach Schmidt said. “We could have been down 1-0, but we were playing well enough I think we could have overcome it.”

Senior captain Stephanie Webb said the win over the rival Senators was a good way to start preparing for the zone tournament. The Tigers will finish the regular season with a road game at Reno on Tuesday.

“(Beating Carson) was great because we worked so well as a team,” Webb said. “It’s so much fun to go out there as a team, play our hardest and kick some butt.”