Mavs Tame the Wildcats 5-0

     The Mavericks began their playoff run hosting the Woodmont Wildcats in the First Round of the AAAA Upstate Playoffs.  The Mavs only took a couple minutes to find their groove.  Maggie Cowley and Emily Praktish had an easy time finding space on the wings and were soon peppering the 18 with crosses.  Maggie had the first good look when she received a long diagonal pass from Tera Dolan.  She took the ball deep into the box before having her shot blocked by a hustling defender.  Lauren Young had her first look from a cross from Emily but was blocked as well.  Minutes later, Emily sent a powerful shot just over the top far corner.  Lauren got another look, just missing getting her head to a corner from Emily.  The Mavs kept the ball in the Wildcat half, only allowing a few long clearances into their own half.  The Mavs got their breakthrough in the sixteenth minute when Gina Cardenas sent a free kick to the top of the area.  Lauren took the ball down with her chest and used her next touch to sidestep the keeper before poking the ball into the back of the net for her first goal.  After the ‘cats booted the restart deep, Caitland Considine punted the ball over everybody.  Ragan Hill raced into the 18 but the keeper snatched the ball before she could head it in.  The Mavs’ found the net again when Gina curled a beautiful left-footed cross to Lauren, unmarked at the six.  She coolly headed home to put the Mavs up by two.  Mauldin continued to dominate the midfield, allowing Sandra Siatkowski and Julianna Traurig to push high from the back.  With the midfield open, Amanda Martin played somewhere between a stopper and a fifth middie, while Kathy Jones was unbothered as a sweeper.  Tera found her way forward often and nearly volleyed a corner into the left upper 90.  Tera had a couple more quick chances when Haley Dunham’s cross from the corner found her in front of goal but a defender deflected her point blank shot.  The ball bounced to Tori Pilgrim who sent it back in front where Tera’s header was saved by the keeper.  Lauren had another crack at goal after Ragan Hill sent her through, however her well-struck shot was saved at the near post.  Lauren came close again at the end of the half when Maggie squared a ball across goal but her shot went high.

     Mauldin opened the second half right where they left off.  Lauren got her hat trick after only two minutes played when she sent the keeper the wrong way.  Emily took the ball down into the corner before finding space to turn and fire her cross toward goal.  Lauren calmly directed the ball back across goal to earn the natural hat trick.  A minute later Mauldin hit the net again and tallied their fourth.  Emily threw deep into the 18 and Madison Scott beat two defenders to the ball and sent a cross to the spot.  A defender tried to clear but Maggie knocked the ball off her foot and into the path of Sarah Kate Phillips who put her first touch low to the corner and past the Wildcat keeper.  The Mavs almost got another from the restart when Emily was sent through on the right.  She took the ball to the end line and put a low cross in to Madison whose hard shot just missed wide.  The Mavericks continued to assault the Wildcat goal.  Madison and Amanda Martin had their efforts from a corner kick blocked and Brianna Knapp’s shot from the rebound hit the side netting.  Haley sent a hard shot from 20 meters that forced a kick save from the keeper.  She came close again when she flicked a loose ball toward the corner but a defender knocked the ball into the keeper’s hands.  The dominance at midfield allowed Cameron Clary and Meghan Meek, taking a turn in the back, to play from well inside the Wildcat half and join in the attack.  Woodmont did mount one counterattack but Cameron tracked back to kill the threat.  Tera had a break on goal and dribbled into the 18 but was hip-checked off the ball without a call.  The Mavs got their fifth with five minutes to play from a good run by Tori and a nice ball into Tera.  Tera checked back and squared to Amanda Basabe who had one thing on her mind.  She dribbled to the top of the 18 and drove her shot low and hard across goal.  The keeper dove in desperation but had no chance of keeping it out of the far corner.  The Mavs killed off the rest of the match having not conceded a shot on goal and earned Caitland her twelfth shutout. 

     The victory sends the Mavericks to the Second Round to host Irmo.  The girls will look to get their revenge in a rematch from the Viking Cup.