The Lady Flyers defeated Western Hills 3-1 in the championship game of the Rotary Capital City Classic at Sower Soccer Field on Saturday night.
Franklin County (3-0) scored very early, only three minutes into the match, when freshman Dasia Kilbourne kicked a near-goal to WHHS’ goalkeeper Kat Embry. The ball slipped through her hands as the Lady Flyers’ junior Ashton Hall connected for the score, giving FCHS a 1-0 lead.
Kilbourne struck again when she sent a goal into the back of the net with 7:46 left in the first half. She landed hard after her goal and referees delayed announcing the score as 2-0, until she stood and was declared OK.
But that wasn’t it for Kilbourne either. With 5:32 remaining in the first, multiple FCHS players hovered in front of the Lady Wolverines’ net. FCHS’ sophomore Emily Wilkerson attempted a goal before it was blocked and in front of Kilbourne. She then gave it a tap and gave FCHS a 3-0 lead.
“She has been real timid,” FCHS head coach Louis Tandy said of Kilbourne. “She’s a freshman. Tonight was the first night she has shown what I’ve known she can show. She plays a lot of minutes because I know what she is capable of.”
In the second half momentum changed dramatically when senior starter Deena Shewekah received a red card for hitting WHHS’ Carson Cline in the head. The red card means Shewekah is forced to miss the next two games. It’s a rule that Tandy said will hurt his team “badly.”
“They had been going back and forth,” he said. “They should’ve carded the other girl sooner, but they didn’t and my girl hit her in the back of the head.
“That’s the rules. That’s part of it. Our girls came ready tonight. They wanted it. They played like it. The red card means you have to play a man down. It hurts obviously, that’s why it is there. We gave No.18 (Amber Peyton) some breathing room and she made a great shot. It happens with a man down, it weakens you.”
The Wolverines’ Amber Peyton connected with the back of the net to put WHHS on the board 3-1 behind FCHS.
Tandy warned his senior Lauren Taylor to tell her teammates to calm down and that they were OK.
“They dropped,” Tandy said. “She’s our senior. She’s a captain, one of our three. That’s her job to tell them.
“If you let them hang around, you give them false hope and they get a score and they get that taste.”
WHHS head coach Alisha Wildermuth called the goal “beautiful.”
“We talked a lot about what it would be like to upset,” Wildermuth said. “We thought they wanted it, they looked like they wanted it, but in the end it just wasn’t enough.”
Time expired before the Lady Wolverines (2-1) could complete their comeback giving FCHS the win 3-1.
“We weren’t playing like we should have been playing,” Wildermuth said. “This year we are a comeback team. They came back second half and they were fighting.”
FCHS will face Lafayette at 7:30 p.m. Monday, while WHHS travels to take on Shelby County at 7 p.m. Monday.
“Before my starting center-mid got hurt, I felt real good about it,” Tandy said about the upcoming schedule. “We should be okay. Sammie Arnold, a freshman, stepped in and did really good. Shelby Sanders played hurt the whole game, but she is just solid. They are a solid team.”
WHHS finished runner-up in the Rotary Capital City Classic and Hayley Greenwell, Harper Jones and Carson Cline were named all-tournament team.
FCHS were tournament champions and Sydney Preston, Deena Shewekah, Lauren Taylor and Shelby Sanders were named all-tournament team.