High School

UH Hands Lady Knights 3-1 Loss In District 1-A Title Game

UH Hands Lady Knights 3-1 Loss In District 1-A Title Game
Written by 
Grace Teater
October 13, 2022

The Chuckey-Doak soccer team fell short on Thursday evening as University High walked away with a well-earned 3-1 win and the District 1-A Championship title.

The air was cold and the energy high as the long-standing rivals met on the field. This is the sixth year the two teams were competing for the district title, with the Lady Knights looking to continue their run to defend their Region 1-A Championship status.

However, they were no match for the Jr. Buccaneers, who were looking to rewrite five years of history.

From goalkeeper to striker, Chuckey-Doak head coach Anna Ricker believes they were simply outplayed.

“I feel like University High really outplayed us tonight,” she said. “Anytime we play University High it’s the toughest game of the year…we knew it was going to be close. To be fair, when we scored the goal early, I thought ‘okay okay,’ but then we kind of just fell apart.”

Despite the loss, Chuckey-Doak started off strong. Junior midfielder Bailea Gilland kicked off the night with an explosive charge toward the goal, ultimately scoring within the first three minutes of the game.

Gilland proved to be a pivotal defensive player as well after cutting off a drive toward the goal from the Buccaneers.

The Lady Knights' defense remained strong throughout most of the first half, leaving no goal attempt from their opponent successful. Junior Niome Merrill remained solid against the Buccaneer offense, cutting off several runs before they could enter scoring range

But when University High began to apply pressure, Chuckey-Doak could not answer.

Junior Blake Johnson put her team on the scoreboard with an impressive goal directly over the head of the Chuckey-Doak Kylee Askew.

After a missed score just shy of the left post from Chuckey-Doak's Kylie Malone University High turned up the heat with Carmen Ellis and Elisa-Cruz Hernandez proving to be standout offensive players.

The two worked together to score two more golas for the Bucs. The night ended with the scoreboard reading 3-1 and six years of waiting finally over as University High became the new District 1-A champions.

The Buccaneers will move on to play a home game against the District 2-A runner up, Gatlinburg-Pittman, and the Lady Knights will hit the road to compete against  District 2 champion Alcoa.

Though not the results she wanted, coach Ricker remains hopeful.

“I want to see them come back together and play with the fire they played with early in the season,” she said. “We can be a very good team when we’re clicking on all cylinders and everybody's playing well. So I want to see that next week. Honestly, if they do that…we still have a shot.”

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