Lady Elks shutout Colleyville Heritage
FORT WORTH — All season, Burleson girls soccer coach Erin Poyner has told her Lady Elks that they are a regional tournament caliber squad.
Tuesday night, the Lady Elks took a big step toward making Poyner seem prophetic as Burleson knocked off Colleyville Heritage, 1-0, in a Class 5A Region I area-round playoff game at Clark Stadium.
The Lady Elks (16-9-1), the No. 4 seed from District 5-5A, will face Mansfield Legacy in a regional quarterfinal at 6 p.m. Friday at Arlington Martin High School.
“I have to give the kids a lot of the credit,” Poyner said. “They did their homework all week, they watched film on their own and the rested up. They gave me feedback and they knew what they needed to do going into this game. That’s big growth for a young group of kids.”
The last time the program won consecutive playoff games was in 2012 when the Lady Elks defeated Western Hills and Granbury.
In Friday’s bi-district win over Fort Worth South Hills, junior midfielder Gracie Spradley peppered the Lady Scorpions’ net with shots in the second half but nothing would go in.
Spradley’s patience paid off early in the second half Tuesday when she reached a pass from sophomore forward Savanna Riggs and chipped it over the Lady Panthers keeper for what would prove to be the game-winning goal in the 45th minute.
“Honestly I was running for the ball really fast and when (Savanna) played it, I saw the keeper coming out and I just knew that if I chipped her, since she came out so far, that it was going to go in and it did,” Spradley said.
With just over 14 minutes to play, it seemed that Heritage had tied the game off a corner but the goal was disallowed. The head referee ruled that both teams had been told they could sub and the Lady Panthers had to take the corner again.
That one failed.
“We pulled the kid out right where she hit the corner too,” Poyner said. “The linesman flagged the middle over and they talked about it.”