Girls soccer: Desert Vista holds on for a shot to win state

Girls soccer: Desert Vista holds on for a shot to win state

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Girls soccer: Desert Vista holds on for a shot to win state

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A quick-trigger offense and an impenetrable defense were Phoenix Desert Vista’s tickets to victory Wednesday night.

The well-rounded effort helped the No.2 seed to a 2-1 win over No. 3 Gilbert Highland in the Division I girls state soccer semifinals at Gilbert Campo Verde High School.

Desert Vista moves on to face No.4 Phoenix Xavier Prep in the state title game at 3:30 on Friday at Campo Verde.

“We came in and played our game, and we put it away like we’re used to doing,” Desert Vista senior Kelly Watson said.

Desert Vista scored its first two goals in the first 14 minutes of the game, scoring on a header by Tatum Heeres in the fourth minute and then again when Watson found the net off a throw-in in the fourteenth minute.

“We scored early,” Desert Vista coach Marvin Hypolite said. “That gave us a cushion.”

Highland’s offense could not figure out a way to get through Desert Vista’s defense early on.

After trailing 2-0 at intermission, Highland came out eager in the second half, scoring on a goal by Ashley Hatch in the 51st minute cut the lead to one, but that’s as close as it would come.

In his second year, Hypolite has coached his team to the playoffs twice, losing last year in the quarterfinals. This year, he said, his players are ready to go all the way.

“We’re hungrier,” Hypolite said. “It’s our second time around. We’re like sharks smelling blood right now.”

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