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Lady SoccerDawgs pull away after break, beat FHS

Bearden’s early deficit coupled with its recent regular season difficulties beating Farragut didn’t phase the two-time defending Class AAA state champs in its latest girls soccer showdown.

Taking over the final 40 minutes following a 1-1 halftime deadlock, the state’s No. 5-ranked Lady SoccerDawgs claimed a 3-1 victory against its No. 10-ranked archrival Thursday, Sept. 18, at BHS’s Bruce Allender Field.

Despite Bearden’s recent Class AAA dominance, this was its first regular season win against the Lady Ads since 2005.

“I think it’s a really big deal,” said Tessa Batchelor, BHS senior All-state defender, about ending that streak. “They are a really tough team.”

About the recent regular season woes versus FHS, Bearden head coach Eric Turner, said, “We don’t talk about that. We let that go, that’s in the past.”

Bearden’s record improves to 8-2 while the Lady Admirals sink to 3-3.

Farragut got an early break thanks to a Lady SoccerDawg foul inside the BHS defensive zone, giving the Lady Ads a penalty kick. Sophomore forward Ashley Reveiz converted at the 35:16 mark of the first half.

Bearden responded less than five minutes later, helped by a failed clearing attempt caused by defensive “hesitation” as to which Lady Admiral would control the ball according to FHS head coach Dennis Lindsay.

Bearden freshmen midfielder Rebecca Stover pounced on the opportunity and scored from about 15 yards out with 29:34 left, tying it 1-1.

“She had a great game … an outstanding game,” Turner said of Stover, adding the freshman was named the team’s “player of the week” for her efforts in games versus West Sept. 9 and during the Collierville-Houston Invitational in Memphis Sept 12-14.

Lindsay said the tying goal “hurt our momentum … we had two or three mental mistakes and that really cost us.”

But the FHS skipper added during much of the first half, “We were playing strong. … We came out hard and played pretty well. I was pleased with ’em for the night. We don’t quite have the depth that [Turner] has.

“They gave everything they had,” Lindsay added about his team. “It just didn’t happen today. Bearden, they’ll help us become better.”

Turner conceded that Farragut “came out and caught us on our heels,” as BHS scoring chances were greatly limited by the Farragut defense for most of the first 30 minutes. “Dennis had ’em ready.”

Turner also praised Farragut senior standout goalkeeper Megan Buzzeo for “a lot of great saves, kept the game from getting out-of-hand a little bit.”

Lindsay echoed that praise — and more. “I was pleased with our defense and Buzzeo, of course, she looked fantastic,” he said. “There’s a lot of people I was pleased with. They were all giving effort.”

Buzzeo said her team “came out really hard,” but added the BHS attack “was able to out-number us and find little gaps and pressure us. It worked out for ’em.”

As for his other Lady SoccerDawgs, Turner said, “I was real happy how our forwards played. I thought Amy Porter had an outstanding game.

“And I really thought our defense did a great job, too,” Turner added. “Taylor Cravanas, Tessa Batchelor and Kimble Glover in the back, and our midfield did awesome. I also thought Kirsten Bodker played a great game.”

After halftime Bearden flexed the muscles worthy of a two-time defending state champ, starting with Porter’s go-ahead goal from about 10 yards out with 35:56 left.

Taking an assist pass from Caroline Gianeselli, the All-state senior recovered her own blocked shot to beat Buzzeo on the right side of the goal.

“We’re definitely a second-half team,” Porter said. “We knew what we had to do.”

The Lady SoccerDawgs added an insurance goat at the 17:05 mark when Samantha Turner, sophomore All-state forward, punched in a shot from the left side with little margin for error given the sharp angle. The crossing pass assist came from Stover.

“I just tried to get my body behind that shot, but [Stover] did all the work, I was just there to finish it,” Samantha Turner said.


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