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Girls Soccer: Siloam Springs headed to semifinals

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Photographs by Bud Sullins/Special to the NWADG

Siloam Springs sophomore bumps the ball in with her body for a second-half goal against Texarkana in the Lady Panthers' 4-0 win in the 6A state soccer tournament Friday in Siloam Springs.

SILOAM SPRINGS -- Host Siloam Springs advanced to the semifinals after a 4-0 shutout against Texarkana in the Class 6A girls soccer state tournament Friday afternoon.

The match, which was postponed to 2 p.m. from its original 10 a.m. start time, saw the top seed Lady Panthers (22-3) take an early lead after Audrey Maxwell netted her 39th goal of the season with 24 minutes left in the opening half. Maxwell received the ball, beat a defender and sent a shot past Texarkana goal keeper Megan Holder.

Siloam Springs' Megan Hutto followed Maxwell's tally with a second goal with nine minutes remaining in the first half. Hutto sent a ball across the mouth of the goal, where it hit Holder and bounced in. Holder nearly managed to keep Hutto's shot out of the goal by pinning it to the inside of the post, but after deliberation, the officiating crew determined that the ball had crossed the goal line.

Even after finding themselves in a 2-0 hole, Texarkana played a defensive style of soccer, only registering two shots. Neither of the shots came in regular play, as both of which were off free kicks from distance, and neither generated a rebound.

"It's tough to play against a team that bunkers in with 11 players," said Siloam Springs coach Brent Crenshaw. "It's frustrating, I wish teams would just play against us straight-up."

"We knew that would happen sometime, just not against them," Crenshaw said. "Haven't seen them enough. It was a good challenge for our girls, to be able to break down teams that do that against us."

Siloam Springs dominated the scoring chances, generating eight shots in the first half and nine more in the second frame.

The Lady Panthers chipped in another two goals in the second half to seal the victory. The first came just six minutes into the second half, when Paige Thompson finished a pass across the box from Hutto. Thompson made no mistake, as she buried the pass into a yawning net.

The hosts withstood a late rush from Texarkana that led to a corner kick from the visitors. Unfortunately for the Razorbacks, neither the corner kick nor the subsequent throw-in generated a shot.

Hadley Crenshaw finished the scoring when she collected a rebound from Shelby Johnson's shot and ran it into the net.

"We definitely come out and practice, and we try hard everyday," said Thompson. "The offseason makes it worth it."

The Panthers will play in the semifinals at 10 a.m. today against Benton, which beat Mountain Home 2-1 in another quarterfinal.

"It's definitely going to be a tough game, but so are all games," Thompson said. "You just have to keep your eye on the prize and go for it."

The loss ended a season for Texarkana that saw the Razorbacks put together a record of 11-10. Texarkana beat Marion by a score of 11-1 on Thursday to advance to the quarterfinals.

Searcy 6, El Dorado 0

Senior Emma Mackey scored three goals and Alyssa Burns had two assists and a goal as the Lady Lions defeated the Lady Wildcats in a quarterfinal game on Friday morning.

Burns scored Searcy's first goal in the ninth minute, and Meredith Clark made it 2-0 in the 17th minute. Burns and Mackey hooked up for goals before halftime as the Lady Lions (18-1-2) took a 4-0 lead.

Burns and Emily Housely scored goals in the second half.

Searcy advances to today's 2 p.m. semifinal against Russellville, which beat Greenwood 5-0.

Benton 2, Mountain Home 1

Benton's Abby Walker scored a pair of second half goals as the Lady Panthers rallied for the victory over the Lady Bombers.

Mountain Home scored in the fourth minute of the game when Sabra Wickersham found the back of the net, and the Lady Bombers remained ahead 1-0 at halftime.

That changed in the second half when Walker scored her first goal with 34:56 left. She scored again a little more than three minutes later to give the Lady Panthers the lead.

Russellville 5, Greenwood 0

The Lady Cyclones beat Greenwood for the third time this year to advance to today's semifinals against Searcy.

The Lady Cyclones got two goals from Rachel Prochazka and one each from Blakely Walker, Marissa Williams, and Cindy Gonzalez.

Brianna Sparks, Sofy Moreno and Alex Adkins had assists for Russellville.

Sports on 05/13/2017

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