Kilgore Girls Soccer Season Ends With 4-0 Loss Against Mabank
TYLER -- Mabank avenged a regular season loss to Kilgore with a 4-0 win in the Class 4A regional quarterfinal round Monday at Trinity Mother Frances Rose Stadium.
The victory was the Lady Panthers' second against an area team in as many games. The Lady Bulldogs finished the 2015 campaign with a 16-3-2 record.
"I told them it was a tough loss and we have to continue to get better for next year," Kilgore head coach Heidi Hagan said. "But we had a great season. We went three-deep in the playoffs and went undefeated in district. We need to keep our heads up."
Mabank (14-9-1) -- which defeated Tatum in the opening round enjoyed a second-round bye due to the complications of District 14-4A not participating in soccer -- had to rally early to get control of the game. Kilgore's Angelina Chavez broke through the back line three minutes into the game, but future Sam Houston State goalkeeper Bailey Swain made a diving stop to keep the match scoreless.
Catherine Turner made the Lady Bulldogs pay six minutes later with a mid-range shot after escaping traffic.
Kaylee Creagh and Courtney Spicer elevated Mabank's lead to 3-0 with goals later in the first half. The team finished the period with three goals on four on-target shots.
Creagh beat charging Kilgore keeper Jalyssia Hernandez for a long pass from Mabank's defensive unit and went to the opposite side of the open net. Spicer closed the frame with a tap to the top shelf of the Lady Bulldogs' goal.
Kilgore gave Mabank much more competition in the second half.
Swain was forced to make five saves in the final 40 minutes and the Lady Bulldogs got off 10 shots.
"We stepped up and figured out what we needed to do defensively," Hagan said. "We started playing the ball a little bit more to the top. We had a couple of more opportunities, but we just held the ball for a little bit too long."
Meagan Holyfield recorded Mabank's final tally with 8:48 to play. The goal came on a free kick from just outside the penalty area.
Mabank lost 3-1 against Kilgore on Jan. 23.
The Lady Panthers will return to Rose Stadium for a noon game Friday in the Region II tournament's semifinal round. They will play the winner of Kaufman and Princeton's regional quarterfinal game today.
"Mabank is a really, really strong team," Hagan said. "They're really aggressive and very skilled. They're just a great team all around. I think they've got a shot to go pretty far. For us, I told the seniors they did an awesome job and there and some big shoes to fill next year.
"I could not be prouder of them. They're great kids."