Girls’ Soccer Playoffs

The cheering from the bleachers drowns out the sound of cleats pounding on the field. The ball is passed from one gold-and-black-uniformed player to the next and is kicked into the goal. The game is won and the athletes are filled with pride as the crowd roars to praise the victory.

On March 27 the girls’ soccer team played against Oak Ridge High School in the bi-district playoff. In order to qualify for the playoffs, the Lady Panthers had to take one of the top four teams in the district finish. Oak Ridge War Eagles won the game with a score of 3-2.

“Oak Ridge offered great competition,” Coach Becky Cobb said. “Our team has grown progressively better over time, and the team chemistry has grown to an extent that has caused them to become more successful.”

The 2014 season began with losses for the team, but the athletes recovered in the Westfield match on February 4 and won every subsequent game. Working together as a team played an important factor in making it to bi-district.

“I was nervous to play against Oak Ridge because they’re really good,” freshman player, Michelle Porras, said. “But we made it to this point through hard work and determination and by giving it our all. I think the most important thing is that we stick together. We’re like a family.”

The rain during the game affected the results, but despite the loss the athletes will now go into off-season, preparing for next year. The teammates will be conditioning in the upcoming months and focusing not only on improving their weaker areas, but also building onto what they have done successfully.

“I wasn’t expecting a lot out of this season because we were a new team,” junior captain Lauren Martin said. “We had a lot of new players and we didn’t really have strong chemistry to start off with, but they really surprised me as a captain. They worked hard and we turned out to be a really good team. I think we’ll definitely be stronger next season.”