By MITCHELL STEPHENSON
The Ravenwood Lady Raptors (4-2-1) with a record of 4-2-1 won a highly physical 4-1 game on their home field against the Franklin Lady Rebels (5-3-1).
Both teams were aggressive and evenly matched. Usually in soccer, one team has a size, or a speed advantage. But both lineups were similar in being athletic and speedy on the field.
They played fast and covered the entire field swiftly during plays, preventing passes getting through lanes that were open momentarily.
With all the action at the 14:19 mark of the half, junior Anna Major scored, giving the Lady Raptors a 1-0 lead.
At 5:29 Ravenwood added another score as Maddie Gleason gave the assist to Courtney Hill, extending the lead to 2-0.
Right before the half with :29 left Ravenwood scored a third goal when Sarah Kate Raft off a corner kick pass from Anna Jahr.
The action continued to be ferocious in the second half, as Gleason followed up her first half assist and got in on the scoring in the second half. At 33:44 she scored to give Ravenwood a 4-0 lead.
Even down Franklin showed resolve and never quit fighting. At 29:24 Margaret DeFranco scored for Franklin, cutting the lead to 4-1. Franklin continued to be extremely aggressive on the second half.
There were periods of time were they controlled the ball in Ravenwood territory and the Raptors team defense stood tall. They shifted and cut off passing lanes and blocked shots before they could get to the goalkeeper.
Lady Rebels head coach Mike Burgoyne stated about the game, “We started slow. We came out second half and put pressure on their keeper, and put pressure on their defense. We just weren’t able to get goals. ”
“We got that one goal, but we had several good chances in both halves. The difference is they finished their chances, and we didn’t finish our chances.”
It should be noted that, even in defeat, Lady Rebel goalkeeper Charolete Menko played valiantly and made several athletic saves in the game when it seemed for certain Ravenwood would score.
Ravenwood head coach Brandon Mead gave his thoughts on his teams performance.
“After the tough loss against Brentwood, at Brentwood, we were looking to bounce back and recover, and that’s exactly what we did,” he said. “This is exactly the response we needed to continue to move forward.
“The girls played great. We took shots when we needed to, and we capitalized when we needed to. And I think that’s the big difference tonight. I’m very proud of our girls. They played a fantastic game.”
Ravenwood plays at Centennial next week, while Franklin travels to Oakland Thursday.
Photo submitted by Melinda Henderson.