USJ ends Lady Chargers' season
Stephanie Sturgis - Press Sports Editor
The Lady Chargers' season didn't end without a fight though. Westview's defense repeatedly frustrated the potent and skilled USJ squad for most of the contest. The Lady Bruins, the runner-up in District 13 A-AA, didn't notch a goal until 12 minutes into the second half. The final two Lady Bruin goals came in the final two minutes after WHS had substituted.
"We fought them tooth and nail for 78 minutes. It took them a half and 12 minutes to score their first goal," WHS head coach Stan Vickers said. "I was proud of our team. Our defensive overall effort was fantastic. I can't say enough about everybody. It was a team effort."
The first half saw most of the action stay in the midfield for the first 10 minutes. USJ began to push into its offensive zone in the following 30 minutes, but the Lady Chargers (12-5) kept the Lady Bruins at bay, limiting surges and shot attempts.
To start the second half, Westview had a quick strike attempt off the first touch, but USJ (17-2-1) denied the charge.
As time progressed, the visitors continued to press deeper into the Lady Charger zone. Following a USJ direct kick from just outside the box, the ball rattled around inside the penalty area with the Lady Chargers unable to clear it. Eventually Honey Heydari slipped a low shot through the crowd and past diving WHS keeper Macy Vincent for a 1-0 lead with 28 minutes remaining in the elimination game.
USJ doubled its lead to 2-0 with 20 minutes left to play on a long high shot from outside the penalty box that flew over Vincent's hands and just under the cross bar.
Westview, the District 14 A-AA champ, tried to answer back but couldn't find the back of the USJ net in the time remaining.
The Lady Bruins' final two goals both came on long, high shots from the front that eluded a leaping Vincent.
The game was the final in a Lady Charger soccer uniform for three seniors — Nour Haddad, Jennifer Johnson and Laura Gullett.