East Chapel Hill knocks out Roberson in 3A soccer final
The East Chapel Hill Wildcats defeated the T.C. Roberson Rams at NC State on Saturday night to claim the 3A girls soccer state championship.
The Wildcats’ win was the fourth state championship in program history and the first since 2004. East Chapel Hill previously won in 1998, 2000 and 2004.
“One of the biggest differences in our team this year is the senior leadership,” head coach Austin Collins said when asked if he think this portends a return to that past form. “What they’ve done to show the younger girls how you can conduct yourself and how you can help manage the program. So they’ve just led by example, and hopefully in the future all the generations younger than them will see that it’s possible and just takes hard work.”
The Wildcats got off to a great start when two minutes into the contest, Sophia Coon took a feed from Kate Sheslow and made no mistake, burying the ball to give her team an early 1-0 lead.
Eight minutes later, East Chapel Hill had a golden opportunity to extend its lead, but a header off a corner kick struck the crossbar.
Ten minutes after that, the Wildcats made that missed opportunity sting a lot less when Coon unleashed a missile from distance that struck the crossbar and bounced directly done across the goal line.
T.C. Roberson goalkeeper Amber Gay was able to snare it, but the goal counted.
East Chapel Hill was able to hold on to that lead and take it into the halftime break.
In the second half, the Wildcats quickly settled into a state of controlling possession through crisp, accurate passes that allowed them to mostly keep the ball away from the Rams.
What chances T.C. Roberson did generate were snuffed out by East Chapel Hill’s stout defense and goalkeeping.
One opportunity for the Rams struck the post, but that was as close as they would get to cutting the lead in half.