Girls soccer falls to N.D.

Thursday, April 27, 2006
Sikeston's Brittany Jenkins tries to kick the ball away.

SIKESTON - The Sikeston Lady Bulldogs soccer team dropped another one-

goal heartbreaker on Wednesday night, with a 2-1 loss to district rival Notre Dame at the Sikeston Complex.

Playing their sixth game in six days, Sikeston seemed sapped of energy, as Notre Dame scored late to walk away with the hard fought victory.

Notre Dame senior Meridith Medlin scored at the 65:00 mark on an assist by Molly Proffer. Medlin received the pass from Proffer in the middle of the pitch, 10 yards out from goal. Medlin made a nice move to get past one Sikeston defender and then shot to the right of the goal.

The shot got past Sikeston goalie Jennifer Millington who had come out of the goal area to get a better angle. After the ball got past Millington, it hit off the right post and into the goal.

Sikeston's Ariel Reynolds battles for the ball.

"Our main focus coming into the game was to try and stop No. 7 (Medlin)," said Sikeston head coach Derrick Long. "We tried to limit her chances from 20 yards in, but she had too many open shots all match long and we didn't contain her at all."

Sikeston controlled the action in the first half and despite being tied 1-1 at the half, the Lady Bulldogs outshot Notre Dame 8-4.

"We played okay throughout the entire game," said Long, "but we had a real good first half and a pretty good first 15-20 minutes of the second half."

Notre Dame drew first blood with a goal by Destiny Dirnberger at 14:00. Dirnberger got the opportunity on a nice cross from Mindy Siebert, who recorded the assist.

"Our defense was pretty solid but Notre Dame's first goal was scored because we were just lazy out there," said Long. "I believe we had a situation in which one girl thought the other would pick her (Dirnberger) up. Nobody picked her up and a goal was scored."

Sikeston answered at the 32:00 mark with a fluke goal. The play started when Paige Silverthorn kicked the ball from the midfield area toward the goal.

Notre Dame goalie Claudia Brauss went out to meet the shot, but instead of securing the ball, it bounded off her and into the field of play.

Abbi Keefer gathered the rebound and put the ball into the empty net to tie the contest, 1-1.

Medlin had a chance in the first half for a goal, but the ball kicked off the left post and out of play.

While Sikeston outshot Notre Dame in the first half, the toll of several games in a row might have caught up with the Lady Bulldogs. Notre Dame outshot Sikeston 5-2 in the second half of play.

"We have played a lot of games in a row this week," said Long. "I am not making any excuses, we battled out there but we could never get over that hump. If we can just get through this week, we can get back to practice and start working on some things that will get us ready for districts."

Brauss of Notre Dame recorded nine saves, while Millington had eight saves in the contest.

In the junior varsity match, Notre Dame shutout Sikeston 2-0.

Long reported that three Sikeston players received all-tournament recognition from the Lady Zizzer Classic at West Plains. Jordi Ferrell, Allison Blurton and Abbi Keefer all made the tournament for Sikeston.

Notre Dame (9-3-1) hosts Jackson today at 5 p.m.

Sikeston (7-11) will play their seventh game in seven days with a road game today at Marion, Ill., at 5 p.m.

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