Oakland shuts out Siegel in rematch on pitch

Oakland shuts out Siegel in rematch on pitch


Oakland shuts out Siegel in rematch on pitch



Editor’s Note: In Friday’s published story, Oakland goalkeeper Emma Grace Goldman was incorrectly identified. The Daily News Journal regrets the error.

A free kick that found its way into the net and a strong defensive effort propelled the Oakland Lady Patriots to a 1-0 victory over the Siegel Lady Stars in the Region 4-AAA championship game on Thursday night.

The Lady Patriots (18-4-1) had lost their previous two matches against Siegel this season, both shutout losses, by scores of 2-0 in the regular season and 1-0 in the District 7-AAA title match.

Oakland hadn’t scored a goal against Siegel since the 2011 season until Emily Zipay booted the ball into the net past goalkeeper Meghan Kiker.

It was a free kick opportunity for Oakland in the 14th minute of the first half. The Lady Stars were called for a hand ball and so Oakland’s Brianna Sears got a chance to attempt the free kick.

At first it appeared that the kick was stopped by Kiker. She had it in her hands, but it slipped away and Zipay kicked it into the net for what proved to be the game-winning goal.

“I was turned around, I didn’t even see it,” said Oakland coach Jeff Boynton. “It looked to me like the play was over, it was dead. I turned around to talk to one of the girls who was off the field.

“My assistants started yelling, the girls started going crazy, and we got the goal. I guess the keeper dropped it, and one of my girls poked it in.”

Added Siegel coach Eric Shelton: “There must have been a little bit of confusion between the back and the keeper. That’s a ball that we usually make a play on nine out of 10 times.”

After the lone Oakland goal, the Lady Patriots had to withstand a fierce Siegel attack. The Lady Stars had 19 shots on goal in the game and 11 corner kicks but couldn’t get any of them into the net. Three of the shots ricocheted off the crossbar.

“Soccer can be cruel sometimes,” said Shelton, whose team fell to 12-8-1 with the loss. “We created a lot of chances, we played well in the midfield, but we had one bad break and we couldn’t capitalize on our opportunities and that hurt us tonight. It’s cruel, it’s hard to explain these anyway, but we’ve got to finish.”

Added Boynton: “We played hard, played aggressive defensively, got a little bit of luck. But luck comes with hard work, and I thought that our girls defensively played very, very hard.”

Oakland goalkeeper Emma Grace Goldman made several diving saves to keep Siegel from scoring.

“It’s nerve-wracking at times, but this is what we trained all season for,” Goldman said. “We’re prepared, we’re ready to go. I have confidence in my defense that they wouldn’t let them get super quality shots on us. They had some good shots, but we were able to defend it.”

Both teams will play in the Class AAA sectionals on Saturday. Oakland will host Warren County at 6 p.m., who finished second in Region 3-AAA. Siegel will travel to Cookeville, who won Region 3-AAA.


More USA TODAY High School Sports