By Brent Glasgow firstname.lastname@example.org
Hendricks County Flyer
---- — PLAINFIELD — Avon and Plainfield will meet in the Sectional 18 girls’ soccer final, after the Orioles topped Danville and the Quakers beat Mooresville on Thursday.
Second-ranked Avon (12-2-3) scored four goals in the first half as it rolled to a 7-2 victory.
“The girls got off to a great start, played some really good soccer in the first half and carried that over to the second half,” Avon coach Eric Nance said. “We played 25 players and got a lot of good contributions.”
Danville (15-2) came in with just one loss, but ran into a foe who’s one of the best in the Midwest, and a much larger school.
“I think Avon is the top team in our state, and I thought every one of their girls was class first,” Danville coach Robert Dowhen said. “But in most sports, you don’t see a school twice your size in the postseason. The two-class system has helped a lot of schools. We aren’t one of them.”
Avon got a boost less than five minutes in, when goalkeeper Kelsey Dossey dropped a free kick from midfield perfectly into the goal.
“Anytime we have free kicks close to midfield, we have her take those,” Nance said. “You never know what’s going to happen on those, but she hit it and finished it for us.”
Avon scored 10 minutes later when Hope Van Wagner redirected an in-box cross from Sarah Zolcak into the net in midair. Cassidy Blacha added two goals as the Orioles took a 4-0 lead to the break.
Madison Knock, Kayli Katterheinrich and Hope Muller scored for Avon in the second half. Stephanie Burdsall scored Danville’s first goal with 22 minutes left, and Elizabeth Smith tallied the last with just over a minute remaining.
In its 2-1 win, Plainfield got off to an awful start, as Mooresville’s Teylor Ellis scored just 30 seconds into the contest. The Quakers bounced back, and didn’t yield another goal the rest of the way.
“Good teams find a way to win, even when they’re not having their best night, and this definitely wasn’t our best night,” Plainfield coach Krissy Robbins said. “We’re beaten and battered, but everyone stepped up.”
Plainfield (14-2-2) tied it with 12 minutes left in the first half, when Brittany Stewart punched in the rebound off a free kick by Londyn Feasel.
Plainfield’s Sophie Warren broke the tie on a goal with just under 18 minutes remaining.
Avon and Plainfield will meet on the Quakers’ home field at 6 p.m. on Saturday. The Orioles won the teams’ earlier meeting, 4-0.
“They’ve had a great season and won their conference, and being the home team in this sectional should help give them an advantage,” Nance said.
Nance and Robbins went to school together and played soccer at the University of Indianapolis, so the opposing coaches know one another well.
“He’s a good buddy, and I’ve coached a lot of their girls since they were 9,” Robbins said. “It’ll be a good match-up, and we’re looking forward to it.”