Flash Staff Report
(January 9, 2017) — After all the hype and build up that came with having 19 players back from a state championship team, Stephenville found itself in both an unlikely and unfamiliar position in its season opener at 5A Waco Tuesday – playing from behind.
The Honeybees trudged off for intermission down one goal with nil on their side quite unexpected in their first half since beating Boerne 2-1 in the 2017 state final, lifting Stephenville to its eighth total UIL state championship in athletics, its first in soccer.
But the champs weren’t about to begin their season with a loss, instead turning to Cheney Carrillo for the equalizer in the 49th of 80 minutes.
No set play build up or transition goal was needed for the winner. Claire Choate instead knocked a free kick between the pipes and past the kicker at the end of minute 68.
Leading for the final 22 minutes, the Bees finished the match they way were trained last season, when eight freshmen took to the pitch as starters in the state final.
Texas Girls Coaches Association 4A-6A Player of the Year Savannah Alford is gone, along with fellow Midwestern State University signee Kaylee Wright.
But the defense moves on, strongly so with the return of Beatris Chavarria, a first-team all-state selection as a freshman in 2017, and goalkeepers Madison Wyly and Alyssa Northcutt, each having already performed admirably when called on in adverse some of the most intense situations you could imagine in prep soccer.
They knew it was blanket time, placing a hypothetical blanket over the goal to quelch any attacks the final 22 minutes to secure the win,, which leads into their first tournament.
The going certainly will not be easy at Mildothian Heritage this weekend. Heritage, only a five-year-old high school, is expected to develop into one of the highest-level top-tier 4A programs in Texas, such as Stephenville and district-mate Abilene Wylie, which earned a draw against Kennedale in a season debut an evening earlier on Monday.