BLADENBORO- East Bladen clinched a share of the Three Rivers Conference girls soccer championship Wednesday night with an 8-0 victory over West Bladen.
Coach Jay Raynor’s Lady Eagles finished the TRC season with a 13-1 record and 16-1 overall mark. East Bladen tied Whiteville for the top spot and the two teams will flip a coin Friday to decide the league’s No. 1 and No. 2 Class 2A play-off berths.
Photos by Kenneth Armstrong
Freshman Maya McDonald recorded a ‘Hat Trick’ plus one of four goals and added an assist to lead the East Bladen attack. “She is killing it,” said Raynor. “Six goals this week and 35 on the season. Her athleticism and quick feet make her so difficult to mark.”
Sophmore Katie Evans fired in two goals and had an assist. “Katie has really been our backbone this week,” noted Raynor. “She is banged up a bit but has really seemed to find a groove the last two games.”
Junior Sydney Wober was credited with 2 assists and a goal in the win. “Sydney dropped into midfield for us tonight and played some perfect balls,” stated Raynor. “She did well initiating our attack, sees the field well and knows the game.”
Sophmore Kenia Medina finished with a goal and an assist. “Kenia has been phenomenal this week,” said Raynor. “She was instrumental in the win at Red Springs. It really seems like the game has slowed down for her and she is making some amazing plays.”
Junior Patience Ward sent a pass to Medina who boomed a shot from outside the 18 yardline past the keeper for the first Lady Eagle goal.
McDonald stole the ball and beat several defenders and the keeper for her first goal of the night and a 2-0 East lead.
The McDonald blitz continued as she racked up two more first-half goals. Medina assisted on the goal that pushed the lead to 3-0, and Wober delivered the assist on McDonald’s third goal that stretched the lead to 4-0.
McDonald beat several defenders and drilled a low hard shot into the net off of a pass from Evans for the first East goal of the second half.
Evans converted a Wober pass into what Raynor called “an amazing left-footed goal from 25 yards out. She can hit those shots and we need her to take them.”
Ward sent a pass to McDonald who laid the ball off to Evans who banged in the goal to grow the lead to 7-0. It was Ward’s second assist of the night.
Wober blasted in a penalty kick for the final goal of the game.
“I am very proud of the girls and the way they played this week after Spring Break,” said Raynor. “We have really attacked the goal the last two games.”
Raynor continued, “Cybil (Campbell) and Sarah (Johnson) had really good games this week. Sarah is really tough and her physicality this week is something we haven’t seen much of this season from any of our girls. Cybil was a monster this week, She is relentless and seemed to make big play after big play.”
The Lady Eagle coach singled out the play of Merritt Martin, Abigail Collins, Ashlyn Futrell, Bailey Davis, Lily Lin and Heather Hardin who all played significant amounts of time this week due to injuries and a formation change. “They jumped right in and made a difference right away for us.”
After Friday’s coin flip, the Lady Eagles will wait for the brackets to be released and try to get healthy as they prepare for Tuesday’s play-off opener.
West Bladen completed their season with a 4-9 conference record and 4-12 overall mark.