Five games ago, with only a win and a tie to Great Crossing's credit, girls' soccer Steve Brown boldly suggested that the Warhawks could run the table in the regular season, win the district title and make a run at regions.
So far, so good.
GC hasn't merely won five consecutive games. It has kept its opponents off the board for 456 consecutive minutes while winning a second straight top seed in the 41st District tournament.
The Warhawks sealed that formality with a 8-0 rout Monday at Franklin County and a 5-0 senior night cruise past Frankfort on Wednesday.
“It was nice, and it's good to honor the seniors. They're the group. They put the time in. They put the effort in,” Brown said. “But now we just go from celebration to kind of refocusing, because we've got the rest of the season to go. It's good to wrap up district again. We're not losing before region. It's not an option. We have the players.”
Sophomores and freshmen have done the bulk of the scoring for Great Crossing (6-3-1 overall, 3-0 district), but senior Madisyn Dodge exploded for a hat trick against the Flyers. Seaton Hockensmith served up two goals, while Ally Nowlin added a goal and an assist. Sisters Meren and Hayden Patton each added a goal.
All the damage unfolded in the first half against the Panthers.
The Pattons had their footprints all over the initial goal, with Meren depositing a dish from Hayden into the lower right corner. Nowlin one-touched a ball to herself to set up an easy tap-in 29 seconds late.
Meren Patton's 35-yard rocket on a free kick preceded a strike by her sibling down the stretch. Nowlin finished the onslaught by following her own shot after a slap-down save.
“We have a lot of unselfish players that are hooking their teammates up on great passes, connections, things like that,” Brown said. “Early in the year we were talking about combinations and we would have two or three in a game. Now we've stopped counting.”
That teamwork was evident in the second half, when the Warhawks tried to help some senior mates better known for their defensive and midfield contributions get on the board.
Shelby Smith swapped her yellow jersey for the home blues and narrowly missed out on a goalkeeper's dream.
Brooke Dennard, Josie Dummer and Emree Schmidt also had shots on frame or not far away from it on the other side of intermission.
The sixth senior, multi-sport standout Layne Ogle, was integral on the defensive end for GC, which hasn't been scored upon since the first half of a 2-0 loss Aug. 30 to Lafayette.
Kal Oakes can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.