By MacKenzie Bates - Sports Editor
Oct. 9, 2013 — Ryan Knipp believes his East Carter girls soccer team is playing the best he has seen all season.
Earning wins over Ashland and Lawrence County, a tough showing against South Laurel on the road, the Lady Raiders are proving him right.
“It’s a good time to be playing our best soccer,” Knipp said. “We passed the ball the best I’ve seen all season so far (on Monday night). When you get a stretch where you play teams like that and you play this well, it can only be positive. Our defense has played great as well.”
East shut out 10th Region power Montgomery County 4-0 Monday night in Grayson for their ninth win in their past 11 games.
“We looked really good and probably the best I’ve seen them play all year as a whole,” Knipp said. “Everybody got into the game and contributed and as a coach I like to see that.”
Junior Megan Stickler scored two goals while Macy Dyer and Emilee McDowell also scored. Taylor Burnett and Stickler each had assists.
“Megan played really well and has come on as of late,” Knipp said. “She had an injury to start the year but has really come back and given us another scoring threat.”
In their last nine goals, six different players have put one in the back of the net. And they are not just up against lesser talented teams. Knipp has put his team through the gauntlet and to his team’s credit, they have passed the test with flying colors.
“We set up the schedule that way to have some great games to get us prepared for the postseason,” Knipp said. “We have stepped up a lot these past four or five games because it’s going to be win or go home and our seniors realize that. We need to put teams away like we weren’t doing at the beginning of the year.”
East Carter (14-3-1) was without starting goalkeeper Starr Caldwell due to injury. Joscelyn Wilcox started in her absence and held the Lady Indians (4-9-2) scoreless.
“She made some big stops and had a lot of shots on goal come right to her,” Knipp said. “We missed Starr, but Joscelyn played very well for us.”
East Carter has one more regular season game before next week’s 62nd District tournament. They will play Elliott County at home on Thursday at 8 p.m.
MacKenzie Bates can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone at 1-800-247-6142.