Evansville- A final four and an elite eight appearance for the same sport within the same season. Not bad…not bad at all. Lawrenceburg’s soccer program, boys and girls, both made it to the semistate level in 2011. While neither stepped on the final rung of the tournament ladder, the state finals, the climb to get as far as they did will certainly be a memorable one.
Both teams played at the Evansville Vanderburgh County Soccer Complex behind Roberts Arena, the basketball facility for the University of Evansville Purple Aces. Tiger Athletic Director Glenn Crocker called the “Pocket City” facility with dual fields “a neat complex.”
The third ranked Lady Tigers were up first against sixth rated Evansville Mater Dei. While Lawrenceburg had the better record (no losses compared to five for the Wildcats), the Tiger crew did have to deal with extensive travel while Mater Dei was essentially playing a home game at the local EVSC fields.
After 80 grinding minutes, Mater Dei came out on top 2-1. The difference maker was a penalty kick converted by the Wildcats Caroline Scales with just over seven minutes to play in the second half.
All of the scoring came during the second 40 minutes. Lawrenceburg struck first with just over 10 minutes gone as an Alex Gilb left-to-right direct kick was headed in by Hannah Knippenberg.
The 1-0 Tiger advantage didn’t last long though as Haley Rheinlander booted in a second chance opportunity six minutes later.