Flashes kick into gear for championship win

Published 11:38 am Thursday, October 1, 2015

About eighty seconds into Wednesday’s game with Indianola Academy, Shelby Bottin was celebrating with her teammates and getting a good feeling about how things were going.

“Right after we scored that first goal,” she said, “we knew it was going to be a good day.”

One of the best days, in fact.

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St. Aloysius scored four goals in the first half — including two in the first seven minutes — and obliterated Indianola 10-0 to win the District 1-AAA championship.

St. Al finished the regular season with a perfect 11-0 record, and went 8-0 in the district. It’ll open the Class AAA playoffs Tuesday afternoon at Balzli Field, most likely against Kirk Academy. After years of being the third best team in their own division in the MHSAA, the Lady Flashes are looking like the team to beat for a state championship in their first season as a member of the Mississippi Association of Independent Schools.

“St. Al girls soccer has never won a state championship,” said Bottin, who scored one goal Wednesday. “It means a lot. We’ve been waiting since seventh grade to do this. Everybody’s been telling us it’s our year, and it finally is.”

Indianola Academy had been the only team to challenge St. Al this season. St. Al won 4-3 in overtime when the teams played in Indianola two weeks ago.

This time, the game seemed over before the senior day crowd of about 200 fans had even settled into its seats for the 4 p.m. kickoff.

Eighty seconds into the game, Madelyn Polk sent a free kick from midfield toward the box. Sydney Mathis collected it, found a seam in the defense, and kicked it into the net for a 1-0 lead.

Polk scored one of her own off an assist from Brooklyn Breithaupt at the 7-minute mark, and in the 16th minute Anna Kate Doiron knocked in a rebound of a Polk shot to make it 3-0.

Polk picked up another assist when Sara McDaniel scored in the 35th minute to send the Lady Flashes into halftime with a 4-0 lead.

“That was wonderful. That was a totally different game than going to their stadium. Just taking their mind off the game and playing their game, and you see what can happen,” St. Al coach Scott Mathis said.

“The way they did it and held their poise throughout that, it was exactly what we’ve been preaching all year.”

In the second half, the Lady Flashes turned the rout into a full-fledged laugher.

Polk and McDaniel each scored two more goals to complete their hat tricks and the defense didn’t allow a shot.

Breithaupt also scored a goal off an assist from Sydney Mathis. Polk and McDaniel both finished with three goals and two assists.

For the game, St. Al outshot Indianola 22-1. Indianola keeper Anna Peyton Montesi made nine saves in a valiant, but futile effort to keep St. Al off the scoreboard.

About Ernest Bowker

Ernest Bowker is The Vicksburg Post's sports editor. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post's sports staff since 1998, making him one of the longest-tenured reporters in the paper's 140-year history. The New Jersey native is a graduate of LSU. In his career, he has won more than 50 awards from the Mississippi Press Association and Associated Press for his coverage of local sports in Vicksburg.

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