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Jim Blaylock
Greenbrier's boys celebrate after scoring the only goal in the first half against Chattahoochee during the boys AAAA state playoffs.

Wolfpack wins mirror each other

Posted: May 8, 2012 - 9:42pm  |  Updated: May 9, 2012 - 7:38pm
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Jim Blaylock/staff Greenbrier's Raven Rose (left) collides with Lambert's Casey Baker as she tries to stop the ball from going out of bounds during the girls AAAA state playoffs.  Jim Blaylock/staff Greenbrier's Raven Rose (left) collides with Lambert's Casey Baker as she tries to stop the ball from going out of bounds during the girls AAAA state playoffs.
Jim Blaylock/staff Greenbrier's Raven Rose (left) collides with Lambert's Casey Baker as she tries to stop the ball from going out of bounds during the girls AAAA state playoffs.
Jim Blaylock/staff Greenbrier's Raven Rose (left) collides with Lambert's Casey Baker as she tries to stop the ball from going out of bounds during the girls AAAA state playoffs.

Playing on back-to-back nights, the Greenbrier boys and girls soccer teams came away with the same outcome.

Both won their second-round games in their respective AAAA state tournaments, each advancing to the elite 8 with 2-0 wins.

The boys were up first Tuesday night, facing defending champion Chattahoochee.

With the Cougars pulled back and playing defensively, it took the Wolfpack until the 7:22 mark of the first half to score. Michael Harris took a free kick from Reed Norton, the 2012 Region 2-AAAA boys soccer player of the year, and rammed a running header into the net.

Then Norton launched another free kick at the goalie. The rebound came to Harris at the right side of the net and he was able to back heel it to Drew Fransoso, who put it away.

With 12 minutes to play the Cougars had their best opportunities to score, but Wolfpack goalie Zack Maxwell was equal to the task with two tough stops.

When the girls took the field Wednesday against Lambert, they were paced by the 2012 Region 2-AAAA player of the year Bay Daniel.

The normally cool Daniel showed some emotion after scoring the first goal of the game, sprinting from the goalie box to almost midfield in celebration.

“That was a hard game and it felt so good,” Daniel said. “I had to show a little something.”

Daniel’s goal was a thing of beauty. She left-footed a rocket from inside the left sideline from just outside the goal box into the bottom right corner of the net.

With the Lady Wolfpack holding off the Longhorns late, Daniel crossed the ball in front of the net, where Brooke Christensen redirected it past the goalie for the clinching goal.

While play was in Lambert’s end for the majority of the game, the Longhorns (14-4-2) started applying pressure, forcing Lady Wolfpack goalie Whitney Roberts to work the hardest she has all year.

With seven minutes to play and the Lady Wolfpack up 1-0, Roberts, who was called on to make two saves, made a huge stop. With the ball in front and a Lady Longhorn fast approaching, Roberts came out of the net and slid, kicking the ball out of bounds. With a chance to regroup, the Lady Wolfpack defense didn’t allow another opportunity.

“I just tried to cut off the angle and space and tried to put my body in front of it,” said Roberts.

Lady Wolfpack head coach Wes Kendrick knew it was a huge moment.

“That was the biggest save of the year, no doubt,” said the 2012 Region 2-AAAA girls coach of the year.

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