HARDIN VALLEY — While Farragut girls soccer head coach Kristen Lyons said she respected Hardin Valley Academy’s “deep defenders,” she also stressed the importance of how the Lady Ads junior combo of midfielder Emmie Harville and forward Lexi Foley successfully broke through that defense.
“Once that first one went in, that made us believe everything else on the field was working,” Lyons said about Harville’s work advancing deep down the middle of the HVA defense before her diagonal pass right to Foley resulted in the game’s first goal, from about seven yards out, in the match’s 48th minute.
With that momentum, No. 3-seed Farragut went on to blank the homestanding and No. 2-seeded Lady Hawks 3-0 in the District 4-AAA Tournament semifinals Tuesday night, Oct. 13. Hardin Valley’s season ends 6-7-3.
“Emmie played the ball through into me, behind their center-backs, and I just had to slot it (past) the keeper,” Foley said. “We’ve been working on it in practice.”
About the victory, “This feels amazing after two hard seasons,” added Foley, who advances to her first 4-AAA tourney title game.
The Lady Ads (11-3-3) stay on the road against top-seed Maryville tonight, Thursday, Oct. 15 (gametime not set at deadline).
A pair of long-range goals provided insurance. Off a nice feed to the middle from teammate Chloe Chase, freshman midfielder Lauren Leslie’s laser-beam shot from about 30 yards out, landing inside the top back of the net, made it 2-0 in the 60th minute.
“She scored a really great goal,” said Chase, a junior midfielder/forward.
A free-kick goal by Annabelle Ekern, sophomore midfielder, came from about 35 yards out near the left sideline in the 61st minute.
Meanwhile, junior goalkeeper Caroline Ekern’s shutout was aided by defensive leaders including Shayne King, a senior, and Maddie Blum, a junior.
“We really put in a bunch of effort and it paid off in the end,” Chase said.
HVA head coach Jessie Stephens praised the efforts of Lady Hawks Erica Wilson, senior defender; Claire Palya, midfielder; and forwards Norah Jacomen and Reese Wilson.