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Lady Ads dominate, yet denied state title
Houston stuns FHS girls soccer 1-0 as apparent Green goal, huge edge in shots, don’t add up

CHATTANOOGA — Sarah Van Sickle tried to be strong for her heartbroken Lady Admiral soccer players.

The standout forward/midfielder, one of 12 seniors who will never taste the sweet juice of a Class AAA state championship following Houston’s 1-0 upset victory in the AAA title game Saturday in Finley Stadium, went around to ease the pain of several sobbing teammates.

“Keep your heads up ladies ... second-place is OK,” Van Sickle said as she consoled tearful Lady Ads.

Perhaps everyone realized that the No. 1 state-ranked Lady Admirals ended a dominant season by giving up the team’s only goal since late September — and its first in post-season play — in the worst possible situation. Losing for only the third time this season (25-3 final record), Farragut allowed only its 12th goal all season Saturday.

The pain was made worse by the knowledge that FHS outplayed No. 4-ranked Houston (14-4-4 final record), especially in the first half, while outshooting its Memphis foe 12 to 2.

“It’s tough, the girls wanted it bad,” FHS head coach Dennis Lindsay said. “You saw how hard they played.”

One of Houston’s two shots found the back of the net with 28 minutes left in the second half, courtesy of Lady Mustang Alali Dagogo-Jack. A Houston charge to the net from the left side ended with Dagogo-Jack’s goal from about eight yards out.

“I can’t comment on that, my vision’s not that good,” FHS head coach Dennis Lindsay said about Houston’s goal. “I don’t know how the goal happened, I know it was a little bumper pool down there, and all of a sudden it squeaked in.”

After the Houston goal, “some of our game went down a little bit,” Lindsay said. “Some of our corners, the crosses weren’t what they should have been.”

Perhaps the pain was worst for senior forward Katie Green, who twice appeared to be in position to give the Lady Ads the game’s first goal early in the first half.

Five minutes into the game, Green came charging down the left side and fired a low, hard shot from about eight yards out at the feet of the Houston goalkeeper, who appeared to let the ball cross the goal-line as she stopped the shot. But the officials made no call despite Green’s protest, and play continued.

About nine minutes later, Green appeared ready to take advantage when the goalie slipped coming out to field a loose ball. Green poked the ball away but her tough angle shot from the left side hit the side bar of the net and bounced away.

The Lady Admirals continued to pressure the Houston defense throughout the game, and created another open scoring chance midway into the second half.

Van Sickle went along the baseline near the Lady Mustang goal and fed an open Sara Ham from about 12 yards out in front of the net. But Ham’s shot barely went high.

“You can tell that we can pass to ’em and stuff like that, get it down there, we just didn’t put it away,” Lindsay said. “That’s all you can say about it.”

Having beaten Houston 2-0 during the Katie Hunter Invitational in Oak Ridge in September, in addition to having “scouting reports on ’em,” Lindsay said he wasn’t surprised by what Houston did. “They had a tough defense, it wasn’t just our lack of offense,” he said.

About his 12 seniors, “they’re a great group of girls, they’re going to be missed,” Lindsay said.


Goals by Green and Julie Kensell gave FHS a 2-0 quarterfinal win over Germantown Oct. 20.

In the semifinals Oct. 21, second-half goals from Emily Beuerlein, Casie Ulrich and Green pushed the Lady Ads past No. 5-ranked Tullahoma 3-0.


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