E.A. Sports Today

Donoho Double Take

Determined Lady Falcons stun top-seeded Jacksonville 3-0 to win County Girls Soccer Tournament; moments later Donoho boys beat Oxford to complete an unlikely sweep

Donoho’s Lily Widener (9) was named the girls county tournament most valuable player. (All photos by B.J. Franklin/GungHo Photos)

By Brant Locklier
For East Alabama Sports Today

OXFORD — The second–seeded Donoho Falcons girls soccer team came into Saturday’s championship match with a chip on its shoulder and was not going to rest until it claimed the first ever Calhoun County girls soccer championship at Choccolocco Park.

The Lady Falcons played brilliant soccer in shutting out top-seeded Jacksonville 3-0. Lily Wiedmer was named the tournament MVP and wanted to play more.

“We came in with a chip on our shoulder and wanted to show everyone that we were the best soccer team in the county and we did,” said Wiedmer. “We were calm, collected and ready to play and played flawlessly.”

A few minutes after the final horn in the girls game, the Falcons boys team made it a Donoho Double Take when they closed out top-seeded Oxford 5-2 for their championship. MVP Noah Wright scored four goals for Donoho in that game.

Wiedmer was diving for balls and rolling on the ground in the last 30 seconds as this was an example of the way the Lady Falcons (9-1) played every play on this day.

”I never want a soccer game to end,” she said. “I love the game and I love my teammates and will do everything I can do to help my teammates win.”

Donoho stunned the Lady Golden Eagles (8-3-1) early with a goal by Constance Hodges on an assist from Sonny Jenkins and that set the tone for the rest of the game.

Jenkins knocked in a penalty kick from 30 yards out at the 34 minute mark in the second half to really ramp up the pressure Jacksonville. Her kick soared high in the air, cleared Golden Eagle goalie Abby Price and settled in the back of the net for another stunning goal.

“Sonny has made four goals like that this year,” Donoho coach Jay Jenkins said. “She has a knack for doing that.”

The Lady Falcons went into a defensive mode from that point that would have made the Great Wall of China look small. They would get some well-timed breakaways and Wiedmer put the icing on the cake when she broke free and jammed a goal in the net with 14:31 to play.

Donoho outshot Jacksonville 21-8. Maggie Wakefield was outstanding in the midfield as she shut down Jacksonville attempts to blast their way into Donoho territory to get back in the game.

”Maggie is a natural goalie, but we plugged her in the middle and she was outstanding today,” Jenkins said. “She is just a seventh-grader and I hope nobody knows that.”

“I hope they do not know it either,” said Wakefield.

Madison Smith, another seventh grader, “lit things up” in the middle part of the second half, Jenkins said. Savannah Frickey also entered at the same time and was a “sparkplug” who “gave us a lot of energy.”

“Our team speed is very good and we took advantage of it today,” Jenkins said. “We have a little bit of offense this year and can score the ball. We have typically built from the defensive side of the ball.”

Another key play came from Burk Owsley, who came across from her defensive position to clear out a potential goal out when a ball had gotten over the head of Falcon keeper Campbell Hagan.

Hagan, named the defensive player of the tournament, posted her third straight shutout in the tournament. Had the goal slipped through, it would have tied the game 1-1 with 15 minutes left in the first half.

Hodges, Jenkins, Hagan and Wiedmer made the all-county team for Donoho. Alexis Manuel, Hannah Rhodes and Rebecca Ulrich made the team for Jacksonville.

The rest of the all-county team included Viera Edmonson (Anniston), Toni Coley (Oxford), Alexis McCorkle (Oxford), Sophia Allen (Sacred Heart), Andreas Torres (Sacred Heart) , Fernanda Arroyo (Saks) and Destiny Hilton (Weaver).

Donoho freshman keeper Campbell Hagan was named the county girls tournament’s top defensive player after posting three shutouts.

On the cover, Constance Hodges (14) scored the game’s first goal and sent Donoho on its way to the county tournament title. To see more B.J. Franklin pictures from this game go to www.bjfranklin.smugmug.com

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