By MacKenzie Bates - Sports Editor
Sept. 4, 2013 — If there was ever a hard-earned victory that meant a lot to a team this early, it belongs to the Rowan County girls soccer team.
The Lady Vikings survived a 1-0 victory over the 16th Region Runner up, East Carter Tuesday night at Dave Schuster field.
Junior Ally Hackney scored her seventh goal of the season in the third minute of the contest and kept the Lady Raiders (2-1) from scoring the rest of the way for the victory.
“When you come out flat like that and not ready to play, it takes the wind out of your sails,” Coach Ryan Knipp said. “They scored first and we were behind the whole game.”
But coach Randy Wallace feels a little different about the win.
“I thought probably for 50 of the 80 minutes, they outplayed us,” Wallace said. “But we outplayed them the first 10 and the last 20 and in this game. Those meant the most. In the last 20 minutes, we made the plays we needed to make and didn’t get the ball as deep and didn’t have the shot opportunities like they had before. We made the plays we had to and held on for the win.”
The numbers from the game back what Wallace said.
East Carter outshot Rowan (3-1-1) 19-16, and although it does not show up on the stat sheet, the Lady Raiders did what they were supposed to do in taking the Lady Vikings out of their game.
“We had 22 shots (on goal) but we didn’t get any to fall,” Knipp said. “Their keeper played really well. They capitalized on our mistakes.”
“They made us earn it,” Wallace said. "They’re a good team and they pushed us for everything we had. Fortunately we made a play when we needed to and (Ashley Burton) made some great saves and kept us in the lead.”
Knipp still knows there is plenty of season left and to hold Rowan County to just one goal in the game is positive for his team.
“It got better as the game went on,” Knipp said. “We usually come out and set the tone early but we just couldn’t get into a rhythm.”
There is no such thing as a “good loss” Knipp said but there are still good things that came from last week’s game.
“They played with heart and you can tell they wanted it but things didn’t work out,” Knipp said.
MacKenzie Bates can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone at 1-800-247-6142.