Lady Mavericks defeat Laurel 2-1 in soccer showdown

By CATHRYN CARTWRIGHT,

The Manchester Girls Soccer team brought home their first win this season after defeating Laurel Christian 2-1 last week.

The Lady Mavericks started off strong when Presley Trammell scored their first goal early in the first quarter of the game.

"We were able to score early with a goal from Presley," said Coach Jacob Iles. "That really seemed to settle us down and let us play our game."

The Manchester girls continued to battle Laurel Christian for the remainder of the game, taking the ball back and forth up and down the field over and over again with many scoring attempts taken on both sides. Lanie Potter made a huge effort for the Lady Mavs as goalie in this game, blocking shot after shot that was sent towards her.

"Our defense continued to play solid soccer in this game," Iles said. "Laurel Christian was constantly putting pressure on us and we were very skilled in doing so.  We tried to keep them in front of us, and for the second straight game we didn't allow a real time goal."

As the game continued for 3 more quarters, players on both teams continued to be more physical, resulting in a few yellow cards on both sides.  In the final quarter of regular game play, Laurel Christian was awarded a penalty kick and scored, which tied the game 1-1 and sent both teams into overtime.

"We have some experience playing these close games this year and it was the second straight one to go to overtime," Iles said. "We better knew what to expect and they knew that overtime was another chance to score and end it without going into penalty kick again."

Manchester battled Laurel Christian through the first segment of overtime, but the score remained 1-1.  The teams continued to fight though the heat wearing down to the last few minutes of the game, when Ivy Sowell made a big kick for the Lady Mavericks, sending the ball towards the goal from midfield. Laurel Christian's goalie over-estimated the ball, which bounced right over her head and landed safely in the net, and allowing the Manchester girls to take home their first victory of the season  and a district win of 2-1 over the Lady Lions.

"I was so happy for our girls, they deserved this win," Iles said. "There were several of them shedding tears if joy.  It was a huge district win for us and gives us a chance to make the playoffs."

Iles said that this win was a group effort, with contributions made from each member of the team.

"Anna Kate Griffin continues to be our motor, she plays multiple positions, never complains, and she is happy to do whatever it takes to help the team," he said. "Ivy Sowell also had one of her best games of the season coming back from her hip injury.  She continues to improve and evolve as a player."