|Coming into Thursday night’s district game against La Vergne, the Siegel Stars girls’ soccer team was on a three-match winning streak. However, it faced a Lady Wolverine team that has a new coach and was trying to change the losing attitude from the past few seasons.
During the preseason, La Vergne head coach Jamie Shields brought a more attacking style to a team that had won a combined five games in the past two seasons. The new attitude had worked so far with La Vergne already winning four matches this season.
By the end of the match, the Lady Stars made four victories in a row with a 6-0 win over its district rivals and the first one in district play this season.
“Anytime you get a district win is a good building point for the team,” Siegel head coach Eric Shelton said.
Shelton gave the whole team credit for the winning streak, and he has been pleased especially with the defense. “They have been playing lights out and also they are gelling together in the back.”
On a chilly night at Richard Siegel Park, the Lady Stars pressured the Lady Wolverine defense early and often in the opening half. Siegel scored three times in the first 20 minutes of the match and it could have been more, but its shots on goal missed even with the La Vergne goalie out of position.
“It gave us an advantage, and helped us keep the momentum,” Lady Stars sophomore Darby Phillips said after the match.
The first goal came in the third minute when junior Kelsey Brown made a perfect cross outside the 18 to sophomore Darby Phillips. The second tally came in the 18th minute when sophomore Cheyenne Moultry’s shot bounced off the Lady Wolverine goalkeeper hands and went in. The final goal of the half came when senior Tori Hawkins took a free kick and placed it off sophomore Meredith White’s head in the 20th minute.
La Vergne had a few chances in the same 40 minutes, but Siegel junior goalie Dale Steinagle, whose favorite player is USA goalie Hope Solo, made the saves. During the offseason, Steinagle went to the Texas A&M soccer camp and was named best goalie of the camp.
In the second half, it was pretty much the same with the Lady Stars controlling the ball, and La Vergne spending most of the time on defense. Early in the second half, Hawkins proved why she is one of the best strikers in the area with a beautiful left foot shot from 23 yards out that bended into the corner of the net.
Siegel had several other chances, but the ball was kept out of the net because of great saves by La Vergne. However, Phillips found the net again near the halfway point and a few minutes later Hawkins got her second of the night with another long distance shot to make the score 6-0.
“We played really well as a team tonight,” Phillips said.
Hawkins is the only senior playing for the Lady Stars, but the underclassmen on the team are also key contributors. Most of the Siegel freshman has had previous success together. As middle school students, the group was a part of the team that went a combined 39-1-3 during its time at Siegel Middle. Also, some of them played together as part of the local travel team, the Strikers.
With the win the Lady Stars improved to (5-3-2), while the Lady Wolverines fell to (4-2-1). Siegel’s next game is Tuesday at Smyrna, while La Vergne faces Riverdale on Monday.