— By GREG WEBB
Entering its 2014 district season, the Weatherford varsity soccer team set their sights on a couple of targets after a slow start in pre-district contests.
“We had a talk before we began district, and we set our goals,” said head coach Tyler Kernan. “We wanted to make the playoffs and we knew we had to come together.
“This is a special group of girls. They enjoy each other and they show up to play, and play hard every game.”
The Lady Roos realized the postseason goal on Tuesday, and solidified the first round on Friday, capturing a third-place seed by beating Arlington Sam Houston, 2-0.
Junior forward Taytum Boyd hit the back of the net at the 33:23 mark of the opening period, providing all the scoring the Lady Roos would need. Makesha Barron provided the insurance goal later in the match.
The victory was a nice salute to the team’s two seniors, Shelby Givler and Stephanie Guilbault, who were recognized before the match.
The Lady Roos will face a good test on Thursday when they will meet Keller, the runner-up from District 4-5A.
The WHS girls have endured formidable adversity this season already, and a mere match against a good opponent in the postseason is one they look forward to.
After the first round of district play, a player’s father passed away, dealing a blow to the entire team. Later in the week, Kernan’s grandmother died.
“In spite of the grief and time away from the practice field while the girls were dealing with visitation’s and funeral arrangements, the girls pulled together and, when it was time, they came to play,” Kernan said. “Our goal of coming together was accomplished.”
In the return district match against Arlington Martin, the close-knit group was dealt another setback when junior Cooper Mullins’ season ended with a knee injury. Despite having to adjust the way they attacked on offense, the Lady Roos have stayed the course and have realized its other goal of making the playoffs.
“After all we’ve been through, these girls are together and working hard to get better,” Kernan said. “I’m very proud of them.”
WHS enters Class 5A, Region I, Bi-district play on Thursday, playing at Keller in a 7:30 p.m. match.