Riding high off their big 8-0 win, the Festus Tigers Girls Varsity Soccer team faced Fredericktown in the first round of the District Tournament, at Perryville. Festus never really got a chance to get going as Fredericktown dominated both halves, putting up nine goals in total to get the win 9-1. The Tigers were just not able to overcome the fluid passing game.
Frederictown took only eight minutes to get on the board. They added more goals at minutes 17, 19, 24, 26 and 33 of the first half. Festus did manage to sneak in one goal amongst the flurry at minute 28. It was Emily Holt finding the back of the net off an assist from Jersey Moonier. The score after the first half was 6-1.
Holt commented, “We came out flat. It almost seemed like we came out knowing that we were going to lose, which is not the attitude we needed. They had two great players that we could not shut down no matter how hard we tried. This soccer season has been great and I can’t wait to see what next season brings!”
In the second half, Frederictown wasted little time, rattling off three more goals at minutes 44, 49 and 51 to end the game via mercy rule after the eight goal differential occurred.
Goalkeeper Zoe Erxleben played all 51 minutes and had her work cut out for her. She gave up all nine goals, but did manage to turn away 19 shots. Festus only managed three total shots.
Head Coach Caleb Zustiak noted, “We came out somewhat flat and although we scored and improved as the game went on, we weren’t able to overcome a strong Fredricktown offense.”
Zustiak commented on a few of his players, and said, “Holt scored for the tenth game this season, continuing to work hard for the duration of the match. Moonier and Lillie Williams teamed up in midfield to open up scoring opportunities and slow down the Blackcat offense.” He continued, “Emma Horsley worked through an injury from earlier in the week to contribute to the midfield work rate and Riley Vogel worked tirelessly down the sidelines as she has all season long.
Vogel mentioned, “We knew going into districts it would be a tough game with Fredericktown being a three seed. Losing is never easy and we knew being a young team this would be a rebuilding year for us. We were happy Emily got a goal and put us on the board!”
Defensively, Zustiak mentioned, “Summer Sansoucie was invaluable on defense and Alayna Erxleben continued to work throughout the entire game despite being under pressure the entire match.”
Williams was still positive after the loss, and said, “I think that the District game was a perfect learning experience for us as a new team to look back on in future seasons!”
The Tigers have performed well and improved the entire season and will return next season stronger and more experienced.