The Valley Girls (Nodaway Valley/West Central Valley) soccer team moved into the regional quarterfinals of the Class 1A, Region 3 tournament Monday with a 3-1 win in Stuart over Greene County.
The Rams drew first blood and gave the Valley Girls adversity. The Valley Girls were able to regroup and fight toward the win, which moved them to 5-8 on the season.
“This was a good team win,” Valley Girls head coach Michael Krawcyzk said. “We came out slow and got down quick. The girls never gave up. The second half we played harder and got two goals to seal the win. We had some shots hit the post and not go in.”
Greene County’s Esther Van Horn scored in the third minute of the game from the middle of the field to give the visitors a 1-0 lead.
Bella Munoz tied the game up on a goal, assisted by Bethany Speichinger, in the 40th minute, just before halftime, to tie the game.
Beth Belden put a goal in the back of the net in the 68th minute that was the go-ahead score the Valley Girls desperately needed.
“I had a breakaway past all the defenders. It bounced off their goalie, I got that rebound and shot it into the goal,” Belden said. “We were kind of down on ourselves at halftime because we knew we could play better than we had been playing. We stepped up our game after halftime.”
Hope Kading said that the second half was a shifting point in the match.
“In that second half we talked more, passed better. We were looking up more and had to make those little connections,” Kading said. “They were playing a very tight defense with a bunch of girls in the middle, so we had to pass it around them more, and I feel we really stepped up in talking and working as a team.”
Tyra Jackson had six saves in net for the Valley Girls.
“To be a successful goalie, you have to have a lot of hard work and determination,” Jackson said, complimenting her team’s defensive effort for the night. “Our defense really did work together, and I trust them a lot.”
The Valley Girls were scheduled to play Wednesday, May 18 at Class 1A No. 2-ranked Des Moines Christian (16-1). The winner advances to play either Panorama or Kuemper Catholic in the regional semifinals Tuesday, May 24.