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Tribe takes high-intensity match with Patriots

Jeff Birchfield • Sep 21, 2018 at 1:00 AM

KINGSPORT — In a match that had all the intensity of a postseason contest, the Dobyns-Bennett girls soccer team held on for a 2-1 win over Jefferson County on Thursday night at Indian Highland Park.

The victory was the sixth straight for the Lady Indians (7-2-1), who struck first in the 12th minute when McKenzie Guest scored on a cross with an assist by Claire Chapman.

Just four minutes later, Chapman had an unassisted goal for her team’s other score for a 2-0 lead D-B held most of the contest.

“It was a really good effort tonight. The girls played well from start to finish,” Lady Indians coach Blake Rutherford said. “We were able to connect a lot more and we’ve been working hard off the counterattack this week in prep. Jefferson County is a good team and we had to be able to hit them.

“Our position was good where we worked hard on our spacing and we were able to play the outlet ball to release.”

That was all the offense needed for the Lady Indians, who led 2-0 at the break.

Jefferson County (8-4) finally ended its scoring drought with less than two minutes left in the match when Sophie Swann took a pass from Molly Zander and curved it past D-B goalkeeper Cydney Kincaid.

“It was a little snafu with the game management at the end, but that’s OK,” Rutherford said. “It was a high-intensity game. Obviously, it felt like a playoff, like a region matchup. We just have to find out how to finish out some games.

“There was no one culprit and credit Jefferson County for working hard to get that goal,” he added.

Kincaid had a stellar performance otherwise, pitching the near shutout.

It also helped that D-B controlled the ball for most of the match. Near the end, Callie Stidham, Madeline Lyons, Haylee Tilson, Anna Kate Breeding and Guest were effective in playing keep-away from the Lady Patriots.

The Lady Indians will host Science Hill in a key District 1-AAA match next Tuesday. The Lady Hilltoppers routed the Tribe 8-1 in the teams’ previous meeting on Aug. 28 in Johnson City. Since then, the Lady Indians have outscored their opponents by a combined total of 27-3.

“I’m just proud of the really, really good effort in the nice string of games we’ve had,” Rutherford said, “but we’ve got a really big one on Tuesday.”

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