After knocking out the Seventh Region Sacred Heart Academy kingpin on Thursday, Assumption High School football coach Tammy Hailey worried about emotional disappointment in Saturday’s regional championship game.
She therefore gathered her team on Saturday morning and delivered a message:
“Listen, it’s done, it’s over,” Hailey said. “We have to focus on today. … We can’t come out there on that big peak and think we’re going to win it. You have to produce. »
The Rockets got the message, controlling the game from the start and posting a 4-1 victory over Manual in the Seventh Region Finals at Assumption Green.
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Sacred Heart had won nine straight regional titles before losing to Assumption 1-0 in Thursday’s regional semi-final. Saturday’s win gave Assumption their first regional crown since 2012.
“It’s what I’ve fought for for the past six years, what we’ve built this culture for, what we’ve built this program for,” Hailey said. “I’m so glad these girls made it. It’s a great group. This team has bonded more than I’ve ever seen. They care about each other. … You go from No. 1 to No. 24 on this team, they all cheer each other on. The chemistry has been amazing.
Assumption (18-4-3) – the state’s No. 5 ranked Maher – will face No. 1 South Oldham (19-2) in the first round of the KHSAA State Tournament. The game is scheduled for 7 p.m. Monday at Carroll County High School.
Manual n° 14 finished on 12-9-2.
Here are three observations from the game:
Freshman delivers for the Rockets
First-year reserve Ella Raider had scored just three goals this season but delivered one of the biggest games of the season on Saturday.
Raider hit a cross from junior Josie McRae to give Assumption a 1-0 lead in the 25e minute. Less than six minutes later, Raider scored on another McRae assist for a 2-0 advantage.
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“I was really excited to come in and do what I do,” Raider said. “It’s hard (to be a reservist). You just have to jump in and play your game.”
Hailey said she wasn’t surprised to see Raider thriving.
“She’s composed, she’s sweet in everything she does,” Hailey said. “I’m so proud of her in first grade.”
Unlikely for the manual
Manuel struggled to create scoring chances and was outplayed 23-7. Second-half goals from Riley O’Bryan and Lilly Bovine gave the Rockets a 4-0 lead.
Manuel avoided the shutout on Gianna Zamborini’s goal in the 79the minute.
Crimsons coach Diego Romero says his team can’t match Assumption’s depth.
“They move the ball well and they attack in numbers,” Romero said. “It’s a well-rounded team, there are no real weaknesses anywhere you can find.”
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Manual’s starting 11 included three sophomores and two freshmen.
“We’ve made progress,” Romero said. “We have a lot of freshmen starting … and we gelled. We are still young, so hopefully next year we can do another race.
South Oldham see you next time
Assumption’s win set up a showdown with a South Oldham side who were state runners-up last year.
While South Oldham is the host, play was moved to Carroll County because the South Oldham field does not meet Kentucky High School Athletic Association requirements for state tournaments.
Assumption beat South Oldham 3-2 on 29 September behind a pair of goals from O’Bryan.
“It’s going to be a dogfight, obviously,” Hailey said. “The good news is that we have faced them and we know what to expect. I think we are ready for it.
“They’re No. 1 and we beat them,” she said. “We definitely gained a lot of confidence from this game.”
Jason Frakes: 502-582-4046; [email protected]; Twitter: @kyhighs.