Soccer Cardinals roll on senior night, 4-0

Published 10:28 am Tuesday, October 4, 2016

It’s fitting the George Rogers Clark High School girls soccer seniors would pitch a shutout in their final regular season home game.

The Cardinals (12-3-2, No. 21) have been doing it all year, after all, so what better way to honor the upper classmen than with the 12th clean sheet of 2016?

GRC pressured the Harrison County defense all Monday night before winning 4-0.

Seniors Emily Caudill, Allison Honaker and Avrey Skillern scored goals for the Cards. Shannon Ramey added the fourth.

It was Honaker’s first goal on her home field.

“It was exciting, especially to score that first goal,” Honaker. “We were all pretty pumped for tonight.”

Caudill and fellow seniors Darby Manning and Sydney Melvin had assists.

“We controlled most of the game,” GRC coach Matthew Abner said. “We worked really hard, the effort was always there. We didn’t play the entire game with purpose — the distraction of senior night was probably the biggest. But it was another win, and I’m pleased that even when we don’t play our best, we still had a good result.”

GRC had some chances to expand the lead even more, but Harrison County’s defense found ways to fend off the Cardinals.

“They’re young,” Abner said. “They’re pretty close.They’ll probably be either 1 or 2 out of the 38th District. We could ultimately face them (Fillies) again.”

While the Cardinals have a regular season finale against Henry Clay remaining, the district tournament looms next week.

“We’re going to work 10 times harder,” Honaker said. “We’re playing really hard as a team, but we need to work on talking more.”

While the game in Lexington against No. 12 Henry Clay will be a tough challenge, Abner hopes it will be an opportunity to return to good habits before the Cardinals move into postseason play.

“It’s getting back to things we have to do, the process of how we want to warm up and how we prepare for the game, how we step on the field and play our game,” Abner said. “It’s a good game also to get our speed of play up — we’ll be on turf — to get everybody moving at that top-level speed that maybe we miss in some games.”

Before the game, the Cardinals honored eight seniors — Caudill, Honaker, Carson Kovalic, Manning, Melvin, Skillern, Brennan Woosley and Brooke Woosley.

“They’re a well-balanced group,’ Abner said. “They’re not flashy. They just go out and do what they have to do within the team and they’re consistent. They’re pretty level.”

Casey can be reached at casey.castle@winchestersun.com.