PHS soccer showdown looming
(LATE NEWS BULLETIN: The Pawhuska Lady Huskies were defeated by the Wagoner Bulldogs, 2-1, in overtime Tuesday night in a Class 4A District 8 match at Wagoner. Carly Culver scored with less than 20 seconds remaining in regulation to send the match to the extra period.)
After a heart-breaking, 1-0, district loss on the road last week, the Pawhuska High School Lady Huskies kept their postseason hopes alive Monday night with a home soccer victory in which seven different players scored goals.
Pawhuska’s girls won for the fifth time this season by crushing the hapless Lady Ropers of Tulsa Will Rogers, 10-0. The one-sided match created an almost rollicking atmosphere for “Senior Night” festivities.
Hoping for the best, and a spot in the Class 3A state playoffs for a second straight year, PHS was planning to head for Wagoner and a Tuesday night district match versus the second-place Lady Bulldogs (2-1 in district and 9-4 overall).
The Lady Huskies have only three seniors on the 20-member roster — Stormee Avalone, Jeni Hendricks and Hunter Sutherland. The contributions of the trio have been significant, however, both on and off the field.
For the third year in a row, Lady Huskie players are at the top, academically, of their graduating class. Hendricks is one of the two PHS valedictorians and Sutherland is this year’s lone salutatorian.
Avallone has been a key defender for the Lady Huskies since the soccer program started three years ago. As forwards, Hendrix and Sutherland have been multiple-goal-scorers in each of the past two seasons.
When the Rogers match was postponed (and nearly cancelled) last Thursday, due to transportation and weather problems, PHS playoff prospects went from improbable and unlikely, to worse. But, once the schedule was resurrected, the Lady Huskies regained their outside shot to at least earn a chance at a playoff play-in game.
A Pawhuska scoring blitzkrieg helped to keep chances playoff hopes alive Monday. Hendricks netted two goals and Sutherland one as the Lady Huskies went out to an 8-0 lead in the opening half. Also scoring goals during the first 40 minutes for PHS were juniors Carlie Culver and Morgan Waddle, sophomore Macy Hurd and freshmen Sarah Phillippi and Karrissa Hughes.
Less than a minute into the second half, Kirk broke free to score her second goal of the night. Five minutes later, after starting PHS goalkeeper-turned-forward Andie Sweeden had hammered a point-blank shot off the right post, Sutherland brought about the 10-point mercy rule by collecting her second score with 35:30 left for another match.
And that match was scheduled less than 24-hours away for head coach Gary Hughes and the Lady Huskies.
Other statistics from the Rogers event showed the PHS girls with 34 shots on goal. Leading the way in that category were Hendricks and Hurd with six apiece. Culver and Waddle had four each.
Waddle finished with two assists, while Kirk, Phillippi, Hurd and freshmen Genie Herren and Stephanie Clifton had one apiece.
The Lady Ropers have now played four district matches and lost all four by 10-0 scores.
Hornets 1, Lady Huskies 0
In the Tuesday, April 16, district match at Muskogee, a late goal by Hilldale High School provided the lone point of the match as the host Lady Hornets seized a 1-0 triumph over the Pawhuska Lady Huskies in a key district showdown in Muskogee.
Sophomore midfielder Madison Patterson found the net for the Lady Hornets with 10 minutes left in regulation, ending a 70-minute scoreless duel between opposing goalkeepers Andie Sweeden of Pawhuska and Nicole Wright for Hilldale.
The District 4A-8 loss complicates the quest of Lady Huskies for a repeat appearance in the state playoffs in their second year as an Oklahoma Secondary Schools Association-sanctioned squad.
Pawhuska dropped to 3-3 on this season after suffering a third consecutive loss by shutout. The Lady Huskies are 0-2 in district play, with 4A-8 matches set Thursday night in Pawhuska versus Tulsa Rogers and next Tuesday in Wagoner. Hilldale improved to 4-8 overall and 2-2 in the district.
In their first district game two weeks ago, the Lady Huskies had lost, 2-0, at Verdigris as the Lady Cardinals scored twice in the opening minutes.
“We came out like deer in the headlights,” Hughes said. “They got two easy breakaways right off — I think the first one was scored in the first 30 seconds.”
The coach attributed the early breakdowns to “freshman mistakes.” (PHS has nine ninth-graders on its 20-member roster.)
Three nights after defeating Pawhuska, Verdigris had gone to Hilldale and beat the Lady Hornets by a 6-0 score.
team: dist. record-(overall record)-goal diff. pts.
Verdigris Lady Cardinals: 4-0 - (9-3) - plus 12
Wagoner Lady Bulldogs: 2-1 - (9-4) - plus 4
Hilldale Lady Hornets: 2-2 - (4-8) - minus 1
Pawhuska Lady Huskies: 1-2 - (5-3) - plus 1
Tulsa Will Rogers Ropers: 0-4 - (0-4) - minus 16
(NOTES ON STANDINGS: The information contained above was official as of Tuesday.
Victory Christian lists no District 4A-8 record in standings that appear on OKrankings.com — the so-called “official source of state sport’s ranking, exclusively-sanctioned by the Oklahoma Secondary Schools Association.” When Victory’s Lady Crusaders played at Pawhuska in mid-March, the match, a 7-1 Lady Huskie triumph, was officially called a junior-varsity contest (even though freshmen through senior players participated for both squads). That match is now listed in the PHS overall win total provides a fourth win on the Lady Huskies’ overall season record.
District 8-designated schools Cleveland and Tulsa McLain list no games to date and, presumably, will not be reporting any late scores. Better watch the official website, though.)