Written by SportsDayDFW.com
5A Region I soccer: Carroll boys top Plano in 2 OT
Sophomore’s first varsity assist beats Plano in regional final
MIDLAND — Southlake Carroll’s boys soccer team is well aware of the fact that its first loss of the season would also be its last. But the Dragons are also cognizant that two more victories will render that fact useless.
That became the case on a gusty Saturday at Grande Communications Stadium, when little-used sophomore defender Ty Cummings made the play of his young career in a 1-0 double-overtime victory over Plano in the Class 5A Region I final.
Facing a swirling wind that had sparked a grass fire a few miles from the stadium, Cummings, who had been in the game for only five minutes, chased down a cross from Mac McGuire. Cummings turned and shot the ball back in front of the net, forcing the goalie for Plano (20-3-3) to dive for the ball. But it deflected right to Juan Carlos Flores, who tapped the ball in for the game-winner with about eight minutes left.
“I just turned and hit it, and luckily Juan was there to follow it in,” Cummings said. “When we scored, I was just picturing winning and getting to state. I’m just so excited to get to Georgetown and play again.”
Relentless defense by the Dragons (26-0-3), who set a school record with their 20th shutout, played a large roll in Carroll advancing to the state tournament in Georgetown. The Dragons will play at 4 or 6 p.m. on Friday.
The last time Carroll reached the state tournament was in 2002, when it lost in the 4A semifinals. Carroll won the 2001 4A state title with a shootout win over Brenham.
“I’m excited. I’m ready to go for state, and hopefully I’ll have two more goals,” Flores said. “But first I’m going to go eat a steak.”
The game played out like Carroll coach Greg Oglesby had envisioned: a low-scoring affair between two evenly matched teams. It was a different type of test for both teams than the ones they experienced in their regional semifinals, when both teams scored in the first 10 minutes.
Oglesby said the wind hurt the Dragons a lot because “we are a very technical team.” But they battled through it and even scored their goal facing the wind off of the first varsity assist from Cummings.
“It was a fantastic time to pick up my first one,” he said.
5A Region I girls
Colleyville Heritage 1, Midland 0: In Midland, Brooke Merchant scored with less than 16 minutes left in the second half, and Colleyville Heritage posted its 21st shutout of the season to win the 5A Region I final and advance to the state tournament in Georgetown.
Merchant was the beneficiary of a perfectly placed pass by Britt Blackwell that went over the head of two Midland defenders and directly to Merchant. She dribbled five yards before beating Midland goalkeeper Jamie Hall one-on-one with a shot low to the right post from 25 yards out.
“[Hall] was coming right at me and didn’t cut off a corner, and I was able to slide it in,” Merchant said.
The win gives Heritage (21-2-1) a chance to claim its first state championship since it won the 4A title in 1999.
“I’m so excited. It’s crazy, insane,” Merchant said. “I don’t think that any of us thought we were going to get this far.”
Heritage put consistent pressure on Hall in the first half, which was the last thing she could have hoped for after she broke her left pinkie making the game-winning save in a shootout victory over Grapevine on Friday.
Midland (22-7-1), meanwhile, put virtually no pressure on Heritage goalie Jackie Kerestine, who has not given up a goal in the postseason. Midland didn’t register a shot or a corner kick in the first 40 minutes and didn’t do much in the second half despite having the wind at its back.
“I’m a defensive- minded person,” Heritage coach Misail Tsapos said. “That’s what I played. We start from the back going forward. I believe if you don’t give up a goal you are going to get an opportunity to win the game sooner or later.”
5A Region II girls
McKinney Boyd 1, The Woodlands 0: In Austin, Texas A&M signee Kelley Monogue scored her 17th match-winning goal as McKinney Boyd won the 5A Region II final and qualified for the state tournament.
Boyd, ranked second nationally by ESPN RISE, improved to 26-1-1. Defending state champion The Woodlands, ranked 13th nationally, finished 20-2-7.
“The girls were committed and ready for this match. It was our only loss last year, and we have shirts with a 2-3 indicating the score of that match to remind us this season,” Boyd coach Jimmie Lankford said.
The Woodlands defeated Boyd, 3-2, in the 2010 5A state final. Boyd won the 4A state title in 2008.
Monogue scored her 126th career goal with just under 10 minutes left in the first half when she deftly headed in a pass from fellow A&M signee Meghan Streight.
“This is an amazing team of girls, and Kelley and Meghan have incredible communication skills. They stepped up at the right time,” Lankford said.
The Woodlands was averaging nearly four goals a match entering regionals but was limited to three shots in the match.
4A Region I girls
Denton Ryan 1, Wichita Falls 0: In Wichita Falls, Taylor Maxson scored early in the second half as Denton Ryan won the 4A Region I final and advanced to the state tournament for the first time since 1999.
“It’s always special to get this far,” Ryan coach Raiford Malone said. “If you go out and win every year it’s special. It’s a new team, a new group of girls, and everything you do it’s something special. What makes this really special, though, is this group. They’re just so talented and tightknit. Just working with them is wonderful.”
Ryan (26-2-1) has won 18 consecutive games and has outscored the opposition, 35-0, in the playoffs. Ryan avenged a 1-0 loss to Wichita Falls (25-2-1) on Jan. 18.
Playing with the wind at its back in the first half, Wichita Falls attacked Ryan goalkeeper Anna Kraft with a number of dangerous shots, but it couldn’t score. Ryan held on and, when it got the wind advantage in the second half, it used it well.
Leading scorer Lindsey Eccles set the tone 35 seconds into the half with a dangerous shot from 30 yards out.
Just a few minutes later, Ryan finally struck after Maxson took a pass from Stevie Harris and headed the ball hard off the left post. Eccles got the rebound and fed it back to Maxson, who shot across the body of the goalkeeper and into to the net just inside the right post.