Girls soccer edges out Wimberley in area round


By Lance Catchings

MARBLE FALLS – The Liberty Hill girls’ soccer team had their season ended last year by Wimberley, and in 2018, they were determined to not let history repeat itself. Liberty Hill (24-2) knew Wimberley (18-4) was a formidable opponent, having faced them for the third time this season, and worked hard to achieve the 2-0 victory Tuesday in Marble Falls.

Head Coach Darren Bauer was extremely proud of the way his team played after the game.

“Last year, when they knocked us out, it was a scrappy game, as well,” Bauer said. “It is the way both teams play, because you want to come out and you want to play hard. When everyone is playing hard and applying that much pressure, it is hard to play nice pretty soccer like we do all year. The girls fought through it and took the opportunities when we had them. They pressured our goalie and we pressured theirs and put ours away. That was the difference in the game.”

Brooke Briscoe put a shot away in the first half to give Liberty Hill the early lead, but it was a hard-fought match down the stretch that took a great defensive effort. Briscoe gave her teammates a little breathing room when she scored again in the 17th minute of the second half to push the lead to 2-0. Bauer said the team came in knowing it would take a strong defensive effort to get the win.

“The games we have had that were close, sometimes, there are small mistakes,” he said. “The difference between our defense and others is we clean up those mistakes. Our keeper had to step today and she did a great job, and that is why she is back there. We really had not seen that from her all year long, but it is good she has stepped into that role, especially now that we are in the playoffs. Our defense played great in front of her and she cleaned up the rest. We knew this would be a big game and a big hurdle to clear, and we cleared it. We have five more games, and that is our goal. We do not want to settle for anything less.”

Freshman goalie Samantha Carter had a huge night. She tallied nine saves in the win, most of which came in the second half on multiple back-to-back possessions for Wimberley. Carter said she just tries to do her job for her teammates.

“At the beginning of the game, I was a little nervous, because our passes were slow and we weren’t moving as quickly,” Carter said. “As the game went on, we started to work and move as a team, and we started to figure it out. With all the shots they had on goal, I don’t try to think about it. I just try to do my job. There was a shot they had that bounced out of my hand before I grabbed it, but all that matters is that it did not go in. During the game, my only focus is to stop goals however I can get it done. Our defense played well tonight. Every game I go in thinking that this is the game that will get us to State. With that, I know I need to do whatever it takes to help my team win.”

Last Friday night in the bi-district playoff round, Liberty Hill put a 15-0 beat down on Cameron Yoe. Liberty Hill scored nine goals in the first half and six in the second. The team was led by junior Briscoe, who scored an unprecedented seven goals in the win. Maddie Dube, Kaitlyn Schutze, and Athena Brown each scored two goals in the win. Abigail Janicek and Madi Fuller each scored one, as well. Briscoe said it was a total team effort to get the victory.

“Heading into the game against Cameron Yoe, we were really focused,” Briscoe said. “I was really motivated and excited going into the game. I got a lot of shots and my teammates made a lot of good plays and layoffs to me. Our possession and speed of play really helped us against Cameron Yoe. When we do that, we can really outplay teams. Working together on our passes is our strong suit.”

Liberty Hill will advance to the quarterfinals where they will face Fredericksburg. A date and time had not been determined by press time Wednesday.