Written by Corbett Smith
5A Region I soccer tournament: Marcus boys & girls advance to finals
NORTH RICHLAND HILLS — Flower Mound Marcus keeper Collin Hall knew he needed to come from net for one last save against Southlake Carroll, which was pushing for an equalizer in the closing seconds of its 5A Region I semifinal at Birdville ISD Fine Arts/Athletic Complex.
“It was getting crazy,” Hall said. “They were coming at us; we were going at them. Just got to keep it out of the net and get the win.”
Hall did just that, batting away a shot with nine seconds remaining to preserve a 4-3 win over Carroll.
Marcus (22-2-2) advanced to the regional final for the first time since 2008, the year it won the Class 5A title, and it upended Carroll after losing to them in the bi-district round in the past two seasons.
“The difficult thing for us today was containing our emotions,” Marcus coach John Gall said. “We’d lost to these guys two years in a row in the playoffs, and our kids were up for this today.”
Coppell 4, Keller Central 0: The past two seasons, Coppell (20-2-0) was eliminated in the first round of the playoffs. This year, its 14 seniors are one win away from a trip to Georgetown for the first time since 2006.
Drake Lovelady scored twice in the first 24 minutes, as Coppell –No. 1 in the final SportsDayHS rankings — dominated possession and limited Keller Central’s chances in its regional semifinal win.
“The amount of motivation that they’ve had throughout the offseason and going into this season to prove themselves and reestablish a legacy that Coppell used to have, it’s been something that’s been on their mind the whole time,” Coppell coach Chad Rakestraw said.
Rakestraw credited his team’s composure in the win; the final three goals were assisted with passes within the 18-yard box.
Flower Mound Marcus 2, Keller 0: A few more performances like what Marcus senior Courtney Forte had in Flower Mound Marcus’ regional semifinal win over Keller, and she might shake the label being the little sister to former Marcus basketball star Phil Forte.
“I hope so,” Forte said, laughing. “I’m sick of it.”
In the 8th minute, Forte pounced on a pass from Ashley Bishop for the first goal, set up by a long throw by Jamie Pugh.
Katelyn Mountjoy scored the game’s second goal just seconds before the first-half buzzer, on a perfectly weighted pass from Forte.
With the win, Marcus (24-3-1) returns to the regional final for the second straight season. It lost to eventual 5A champ Plano West in a shootout last season.
Southlake Carroll 2, Hebron 1: Julia Dyche had an assist and a goal in the span of 2 1/2 minutes, as Southlake Carroll advanced to the regional final.
Dyche’s corner in the 11th minute found freshman Grace Cory open on the far post — with her easy header giving Carroll (28-2-0) an early lead.
Less than three minutes later, Carroll freshman defender Allie Luna — the younger sister of former SLC football and baseball star Aaron Luna — made a nice run down the right side of the pitch, getting near the six-yard box and making a pass to Dyche, who converted the attempt.
Follow Corbett Smith on Twitter at @corbettsmithDMN