Something finally gave.
After Destrehan and Central Lafourche battled to scoreless ties in two district games, something had to give with the Division II semifinals on the line Monday night in Destrehan.
What gave was the Lady Wildcats’ defense.
After allowing a total of only seven goals through 22 games, Destrehan surrendered four to Central Lafourche – all in the first half – of a 4-1 loss that denied the Lady Wildcats a second-consecutive trip to the girls’ soccer semifinals.
“Our plan the last couple of weeks, and in practice, is we were trying to start out fast and put pressure on the opponent throughout the game. It came together tonight,” said Central Lafourche coach Jude Blanchard.
“We had a good start. We went up 1-0 but then they just used their set pieces. They scored all their goals from set pieces, which was unfortunate. We worked on how to defend them, we just didn’t do a good job of on defending those set pieces,” Destrehan coach Mert Deger said.
In the first two outings, Destrehan senior Tayler Tabb was pressed into action at goal keeper due to injuries. She proved more than adequate replacement, tossing a pair of shutouts but the team’s offense struggled without her on the offensive end.
“It was tough having to play goal. I don’t like playing goal. I hadn’t played since I was like four,” said Tabb.
Tabb made her presence felt quickly Monday night, scoring the breakthrough goal between the two teams early in the first half to give Destrehan a 1-0 lead.
“I told my friends I was going to score in the first 20 minutes. I said I was really going to make it happen. I did it and it was a big thing to actually get a score against them. Sadly, they came back and scored four,” Tabb said.
From that point on, Central Lafourche seemed like a virtual scoring juggernaut by score four-unanswered goals.
A pair of goals off of corner kicks allowed Central Lafourche to take a 2-1 lead. The first came by forward Lacie Lemoine at the 16:18 mark of the opening half and the other by midfielder Sarah Hodson at the 14:23 mark.
Destrehan missed a scoring opportunity three minutes later on a nice save by Central Lafourche goal keeper Addie Chauvin.
A goal by Claire Hodson extended Central Lafourche’s advantage to 3-1.
Central Lafourche’s final game came during stoppage time on a rebound shot by McKenzie Champagne.
Taking advantage of their bigger, physical edge, the Lady Trojans displayed an attacking style through the contest.
Although Central Lafourche held a 4-1 lead, the Lady Trojans continued their attacking style throughout the second half.
“They are a very physical team. That’s their style,” said Deger. “They use their strength to get the ball up the field. We just couldn’t play our game, which is more possession. They just used their size to get us off the ball quicker.”
“We probably got over-excited and we started to get tired. We had three girls that were sick. They played amazing. We let our guard down and we couldn’t get back up,” Tabb said.
Destrehan missed out on a few scoring opportunities in the second half. A penalty kick by Noelle Kelley hit the crossbar at about the 16-minute mark of the second half.
Tabb failed to connect on a direct free kick in stoppage time and the Lady Wildcats lost to conclude their season at 19-2-2.
Central Lafourche, which improved to 20-5-4, advances to take on St. Thomas More in the semifinals.