Girls soccer advances to CIF finals

Elizabeth O'Loughlin, Staff Writer

On Wed., Feb. 29, the girl varsity soccer team made Carlsbad High School history for the third time this season. Already the only Carlsbad soccer team to ever win league, these lady lancers became the fourth team to ever make it to the semi-final round of CIF. After a 3-0 win over Eastlake, they became the first team to advance to CIF finals.

“I think we played really well. We came in at full pace and knew losing wasn’t an option,” senior captain Sami Keville said. “We wanted to break more records, make it to the finals, and then eventually win that as well”.

During warm-up, the girls anxiously waited for the start of the game. However, at the sound of the first whistle, sophomore Cindy Garcia and junior Toni Duggan led a rush up to goal, proving the Lancers unnerved and up for the fight.

The girls received the first corner kick of the game with twenty-six minutes left in the first half. Duggan sailed a ball into the 18-yard box, and after a mad scramble between both teams, senior captain Haley Hendricks passed the ball to Keville, scoring a goal and making the score 1-0.

As play continued, with thirteen minutes left, senior Makaela Thompson booted a ball in the net from outside the 18-yard box, making the game 2-0.

At the end of the half, the play was 80% Carlsbad possession to Eastlake’s 20% possession.

“Play is strong all across the park girls,” Coach Carl Higham said during halftime. “Don’t stop running at them. Forwards need to make things happen…one more goal against them and they’re dead”.

With strong will and determination, the Lady Lancers powered through the second half, allowing little offensive chances for Eastlake. Fluid passes between junior Kat Padgett and senior captain Morgan Batcheller ensured strong offensive plays while also upholding a strong defense. During the entire 80-minute time span of the game, senior captain Mckenna Tollack only touched the ball a total of five times while playing in goal.

Finally, with only 18 minutes left in the game, Batcheller received a free kick from the 35-yard line. After yet another mad scramble, Batcheller’s curve ball landed in the goal after being deflected in by an Eastlake defensive player. The final score was 3-0.

“It was a really high energy and intense game,” sophomore Sara Harelson said. “It was such an honor to be on the team this year, I can’t wait to go to finals!”

The next game for the Lady Lancers is CIF finals on Sat., March 3 at Mater Dei High School at 5:30 p.m.. Crowd support is vital so everyone should go out and support these girls as they seek to make Carlsbad history for a fourth time this season.