By Anthony Jones
Wrapping up one of their most successful regular seasons in school history, the Triad Lady Knights soccer team took on the Jersey Panthers and Highland Bulldogs this past week. These two opponents were all that stood in Triad’s way of an undefeated regular season and a perfect Mississippi Valley Conference record.
Opening the week with a May 25 trip to Jerseyville, Triad jumped out to a big lead early. At the end of the first half, the Lady Knights led 5-0. By the end of the game, the score had grown to 9-0.
Scoring the first hat trick of the year for the team, Triad’s Breanna Zurek led all scorers with 4 goals. Other goal scorers were Gracie Giacoletto, Karen Speer, Caty Burton, Macy Mell, and Hannah Sparks totaled one a piece. Kendall Chigas and Grace Cawvey combined for the shutout in goal.
Looking to finish their MVC schedule with a 10-0 record, Triad went to take on the Highland Bulldogs three days later. Playing host for the contests, the Bulldogs entered the game with a single win on the year.
The host team played remotely close in the first half, trailing only 2-0. Triad got the ball rolling in the second half, finishing with an 8-0 win.
Gabbie Wood led the Lady Knight’s offense with four goals, the second hat trick of the season for the team. Emily Rosenthal also racked up a pair of goals in the game. Other scores were Maddie Milligan and Burton.
Finishing the regular season, Triad has outscored their opponents 84-3. The team has trailed once this season, when they were down 1-0 for around 22 minutes in the second half. They have also taken down two teams that were ranked number one in Illinois entering the matchup, which were Edwardsville and O’Fallon.
Triad’s potential second round opponents in the IHSA playoffs are Civic Memorial and Charleston. If they win that game, they will play again on June 8 for the Sectional semifinals and on June 11 for the Sectional championship.