The OTHS girls soccer squad opened their spring season on a positive note last week, winning two of three games to collect the third place trophy in the Metro Cup Tournament.
The Panther booters defeated Triad and Springfield with a loss to Waterloo sandwiched between the two victories.
Scoring was at a premium in the OTHS girls season opener against the Triad Knights. The two squads battled to a scoreless draw through the first 30 minutes before the Panthers found the back of the net. Tamia Cash blasted home what proved the game-winner off an assist by Hannah Averick at 31:09. Sydney Brake, the O’Fallon goalkeeper, and the Panther defenders took over from that point, stuffing the Triad offense to preserve the 1-0 shutout. Brake recorded nine saves for the Panthers, propelling them into the semifinals against the Waterloo Bulldogs.
The shoe ended up on the other foot for the Panthers when they faced off against Waterloo. Unable to generate a consistent offensive attack, the O’Fallon girls dropped a 1-0 decision.
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“It was one of those games where the ball just wouldn’t go in the net for us,” OTHS coach Craig Dippel said. “I can’t fault the effort of our girls. We had 13 shots—and most were just wide—hit off the crossbar or were cleared at the last second by a Waterloo defender. We were able to keep the pressure on most of the game.”
O’Fallon’s offensive struggles extended through the first half of the third place contest against Springfield High. Fortunately, the Panther defense was solid, sending the game into intermission deadlocked 0-0. O’Fallon’s KK Voelker ended the stalemate when she broke behind the Springfield defenders and scored the Panthers’ first goal. Maggie Sheerin supplied some valuable insurance a few minutes later, doubling the O’Fallon advantage. Taylor Signore and Sam Stutsman assisted on the goals that helped the Lady Panther booters to their third place finish.
“A good offensive effort and great defensive work by our girls accounted for our third place trophy,” Dippel said. “Even though the weather prohibited us from a lot of preseason work, the girls were fired up and executed really well to open our season.”
The Lady Panther booters are scheduled for a busy second week with early matches against Marion and Belleville Althoff, finishing the week with a road game this Saturday at Nerinx Hall.