By Mitch Howard
LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. —
Trailing just 2-0 at halftime, North Laurel was still in pretty good shape against Corbin in the first round of the 49th District Tournament. The problem was they had used everything they had to get to that point.
“I told the coaches 10 minutes into the second half, we exhausted ourselves in the first half. We came out and played with a lot of adrenaline and a lot of heart,” North Laurel coach Becki Woodworth said. “We really ran out of gas.”
The 7-0 loss to the Lady Redhounds ends North Laurel’s season. It was not typical of North Laurel-Corbin games which are often not decided until the final minutes.
“This is by far the biggest discrepancy we’ve had winning against them,” Corbin coach Eric Steely said. “Becki always has her teams ready to play.”
The Lady Jaguars again appeared ready to play in a close first half. It was after that nothing was left in the tank.
“I could see it happening toward the end of the first half and I was just hoping halftime would be enough to get our energy level back up. It just never came back,” Woodworth said.
Madalyn Thompson scored the opening goal for the Lady Redhounds on an assist from Kaitlyn Waddle.
North Laurel would get chances to tie the score. Keeper Meghan Blackburn made a diving stop on a kick by Bela De la Pena on a pass from Jenna Rockwell. Chelsey Hensley also just missed off the cross bar on a corner kick.
The Lady Redhounds would add one more goal before the half when Morgan Boggs scored on a pass from Thompson.
“Brianna Bernard played the best soccer game of her life tonight at sweeper. If it wasn’t for some of the plays she made tonight it would have been 4-0 at halftime,” Woodworth said. “The girls played with all their heart. You can’t fault their heart or desire. Corbin was stronger, faster, better all night long,” Woodworth said.With 21 minutes remaining Corbin made it a 3-0 lead when Waddle found a clean shooting lane from 20-yards out.
“I don’t want to say it was over, but we really did not have the energy level left to do anything about it,” Woodworth said. “I tried to stack us up top, pulled out a midfielder which just opened it up more for them to score.”
Two minutes later it would be 4-0 when a hand ball led to a direct kick for Hannah Henegar.
The momentum was all Corbin now as Waddle scored again on a long curving kick from 25 yards out. The keeper was able to get a hand on the ball, but not stop it.
The Lady Redhounds added two more late goals. Boggs made a move on the near post and then slipped a shot just past the keeper with 8:21 to play. One minute later it was Sydney Hurst with a slow roller through traffic.
“These girls have been playing for two months all game every game. They are exhausted. We expended so much energy at the start of the game we just didn’t have anything left at the end of it. I couldn’t be prouder of my girls,” Woodworth said.