A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Notre Dame girls soccer team needs one more win to be crowned record-setting state champions

By Terry Boehmker
NKyTribune sports reporter

The Notre Dame girls soccer team needs one more victory to claim a state championship trophy and set a state record for most wins in season.

The Pandas put themselves in that enviable position with a 3-0 win over West Jessamine in a state semifinal match on Thursday that was played in a consistent rain at Frederick Douglass High School in Lexington.

Kennedy Clark scored one of the three goals for Notre Dame in the state semifinal match. (File photo by Bob Jackson)

With that victory, Notre Dame (27-0-1) tied the state record for most wins in a season and has a chance to break it in the state championship final against South Oldham (23-2-0) at 7 p.m. Saturday at Frederick Douglass.

The Pandas have already set a state record with 24 shutouts. One of them came in a 3-0 win over South Oldham on Aug. 16. The Dragons scored 108 goals in their other 24 matches, including a 5-0 win over Henderson County in the other state semifinal match.

Notre Dame didn’t score in the first half of its semifinal match, even though the Pandas had five shots on goal and a 5-0 advantage in corner kicks. But it took them less than two minutes to take a 1-0 lead after the intermission.

The scoring play began with a crossing pass by Notre Dame senior Ellie Greenwell that wasn’t collected by West Jessamine’s goalkeeper. The ball came out to Notre Dame senior Amber Branum and she kicked it into the net.

The Pandas got their other two goals less than four minutes apart. The first one was an unassisted goal by junior forward Kennedy Clark, who got past a defender and blasted a shot inside the far post with 16:20 left on the clock.

Abby Breeze

Less than four minutes later, senior starter Marina Ruthsatz got the third goal off an assist by senior substitute Sarah Henson to put the match away for Notre Dame.

Notre Dame senior goalkeeper Abby Breeze did not make any saves during the 73 minutes she spent guarding the net before coming out of the match. West Jessamine’s only shot on goal was a free kick that went off the crossbar.

Notre Dame took a total of 22 shots, three of them went into the net and eight others were saved by West Jessamine goalkeepers.

Covington Catholic will play Lexington Dunbar in the boys state championship match at 4 p.m. Saturday followed by the Notre Dame vs. South Oldham girls match at 7 p.m. at Frederick Douglass High School.

This is the sixth time that Northern Kentucky boys and girls soccer teams have made it to the state finals in the same year, but local teams have never been able to sweep both titles.

Related Posts

Leave a Comment