Lions again turned away in quest for first district win
The Brownwood Lady Lions wrapped up the home portion of their schedule by completing a District 4-4A sweep of the Mineral Wells Lady Rams with a 2-1 triumph Tuesday at Gordon Wood Stadium.
The Lady Lions (12-6, 3-5), who will head into the playoffs as the third seed out of 4-4A, have recorded all their district victories against Mineral Wells.
In Tuesday’s contest, Aleyia Cotton broke a 1-all tie with 5:44 remaining, scoring from 10 yards out on the right side.
“That was just a great player making a great play,” said Brownwood soccer head coach Brent Hardwick. “I’m really glad we didn’t have to send it to a shootout. Aleyia is just a gifted and great player. She’s a great asset to the program and the team, and she makes all the difference whether she’s on the ball or off the ball.”
Cotton also scored 6:27 in to the contest to give the Lady Lions a lead they maintained until 16:36 remained in the game.
“The first half we got that goal and had a few more chances but things didn’t go our way,” Hardwick said. “We were a little unlucky.”
The ultimate bad luck play happened to the Lady Lions with just under 17 minutes to go as Mineral Wells recorded its lone goal on an own goal by Brownwood following a corner kick.
“We’ve had to spend more time on the possession phase of the game and we didn’t have as much time on set pieces,” Hardwick said. “We have some different people filling in and the communication wasn’t quite there.”
Channing Barron finished with three saves for Brownwood.
The Lady Lions close out the regular season at defending state champion Stephenville at 5 p.m. Friday.
“I’m very excited about what I’ve seen and Stephenville will be a good warm up for the postseason,” Hardwick said. “We know they’re going to play us hard every single time, and we’ll get out there and mix it up with them. But the main thing is we want to try and stay healthy and not limp into the postseason.”
Mineral Wells 3, Lions 0
“That’s the most hopeful and happy I’ve been with the guys’ performance since before district started.”
Though the Brownwood Lions were again denied their first District 4-4A soccer victory, head coach Brent Hardwick was pleased with what he saw from the team in Tuesday’s 3-0 loss to Mineral Wells at Gordon Wood Stadium.
“I saw a lot of promise,” Hardwick said. “We matched possessions with them better and made it more of a game. And the seniors stepped up on Senior Night and really played their hearts out.”
Braden Bushnell recorded 11 saves in goal for the Lions (4-14-1, 0-8), who will be the fourth playoff seed from District 4-4A.
The Lions wrap up regular season action at Stephenville at 7 p.m. Friday.