By BRAD KEITH
GEORGETOWN (April 12, 2017) — There will be a first-time state champion crowned in 4A girls soccer and Stephenville is down to the last two teams in the running.
After their dominating 2-0 win over Athens in the first semifinal Wednesday, the Honeybees (24-4) hung around to watch the first half of a 2-1 Boerne (21-4-1) win over Jasper. The state final kicks off at 2:30 p.m. Thursday at Birkelbach Field.
Head coach Casey Weil stayed behind and watched the rest of the game and had this to say about Boerne:
“They’re good, just solid. They remind me of several teams we have seen this year in our district and our region. But I don’t look out there and see anything we haven’t gone up against before. We just have to play our game and play it well.”
Paige Marcell scored both goals unassisted for Boerne, which led 2-0 before Jasper’s Julie Carter headed in a corner to the box from Alivia Richardson to make it interesting with just more than 20 minutes left.
Jasper threatened a couple more times down the stretch, even hitting the cross bar on a free kick from 25 yards out.
But Boerne finally cleared after several consecutive minutes of Jasper pressure, and the Region III-4A champion Bulldogs were unable to threaten the Region IV Greyhounds in the final moments.
“She’s going to get her a whole big dose of (Beatris Chavarria),” Weil said of Marcell. “We always pick the one we know we need to mark and that’s who Bea gets. I think she will continue to do what she has done. She’s been huge for us and we need her to play that way one more time.”
One more time for the state championship.
Boerne was noticeably better out of the back than Jasper, and the Greyhounds will have to be that way again with Stephenville’s dynamic freshman duo of Gracie Bales and Ciara Johnston playing at the top of their game. Bales headed in a Johnston corner then delivered a cross for an assist on a Johnston header in the 2-0 Stephenville win over Athens.
Boerne had just eight shots and Jasper 17. Jasper put six on goal and Boerne five. There were five corners by Jasper and three by Boerne.
In addition to Marcell, Weil was also impressed by Boerne midfielder Mary Kate Snelling.
“She won a lot of balls in the middle today and she’s another one we have to take care of,” Weil said. “They’re all good. They’re in the state championship for a reason.”
Boerne, a second-time state tournament participant, and Stephenville have two common opponents in Kennedale and Abilene Wylie. Stephenville played Wylie three times two of them went to penalties after regulation draws in District 3-4A. Wylie won two of the three matches with the Bees but lost to Boerne, 1-0.
“They played on a real windy day and a ball kind of blew around and took a weird bounce into the goal,” Weil said. “It should have probably been scoreless.”
Kennedale beat Boerne 2-0 early in the year. Stephenville beat two-time reigning state champ and No. 1 ranked Kennedale 3-1 in penalties after a scoreless draw through regulation and two overtimes in last week’s Region I-4A final.
Boerne ISD is having a banner year on the girls soccer pitch as Boerne Champion is in the 5A state tournament which begins Thursday morning.