The wait turned into a hard-fought tie on Saturday for the Circleville girls soccer team.
After having their opener postponed last Monday, the Tigers finally commenced their season under a beautiful fall-like sky on Saturday as they battled the visiting Athens Bulldogs to a 1-1 non-league draw.
Athens took advantage of a slow start by the Tigers to take a 1-0 lead approximately midway through the first half.
The Bulldogs controlled possession for most of the first half until the Tigers started putting pressure on their back line.
A key save from keeper Kylie McCain just two minutes into the second half provided a spark for the Tigers.
The Tigers tied the match with approximately 20 minutes left when Faith Yancey assisted on a throw ball that slipped behind Athens’ back line and was deposited into the back of the net by Makya Cockerham.
“Faith and Makya along with Bella Morningstar played well on the attack and worked hard against a very talented Athens backline,” Circleville coach Joe Stitt said. “Their centerback is one of the best players in southeast Ohio, so we really had to make a lot of adjustments and keep working to get our chances.”
Circleville continued to keep the pressure on but was unable to score again before the final buzzer sounded.
“We came out a little flat defensively but picked up steam as the day went on and found our form,” Stitt said. “Payton Ford and Emma Groff both played well in the middle to anchor the back line. Freshman Bailey Zheng stepped up and had a nice day as well. She was understandably nervous as a freshman coming into her first varsity game, but she settled in nicely and gave us a very solid 80-minute performance.
“We definitely have some things to clean up in the back, with two big challenges coming up on Monday against Jackson and Wednesday in our league opener against Hamilton Township, but they responded well and made adjustments as the match went on.”
The Tigers (0-0-1) continue non-league action on Monday when they host the Jackson Ironladies to make up last week’s postponed match.
New Lexington 0
Kinsley Berger put away a hat trick on Saturday and helped Amanda-Clearcreek to a 7-0 non-league win over visiting New Lexington.
Rachel Weaver scored a goal and assisted on three others, Abbie Leist had a goal and an assist, and Ava Rowley and Emma Strickler each added a goal for the Aces (1-1), who host Unioto on Monday for a non-league tilt.
New Lexington 0
Cam Corey scored a hat trick and assisted on another goal on Saturday afternoon to help lead Amanda-Clearcreek to a 5-0 non-league win over visiting New Lexington.
Brennan Rich also scored and chipped in a pair of assists and Tyler Hines contributed a goal.
Hayden Dunn and Jackson Corey combined for a clean sheet for the Aces, who continue non-league play on Monday when they host Unioto.
Teays Valley 1,
Maxwell Spencer scored for Teays Valley on Saturday in a 1-1 non-league draw against host Groveport.
Derek Yarnell made five saves for the Vikings (1-0-1), who continue non-league play on Thursday when they host Whetstone.
Logan Elm 3,
Zane Trace 0
After edging out host Zane Trace in the first set on Saturday, Logan Elm gradually picked up steam on its way to a 27-25, 25-18 and 25-15 non-league win.
Claire King pounded away 23 kills and also had three assisted blocks; Kennedy Groff contributed eight kills; Macy Greene had five kills; Addison Smith tallied four kills; Kimberly Petty served four aces and had 10 digs; Lynsay VanHoose paced the defense with 23 and also had three aces; Hannah Rhoads distributed 37 assists and added 14 digs; Kiki Ingram turned in 16 digs and Sadie Binkley added 10 digs.
The Braves (1-0) host Unioto on Tuesday for the first official sporting event in the new high school gym.
Now open at 130 Crites Road in Circleville!