PROSPER — After making an early mark on the district season on Tuesday, the Prosper High School Lady Eagles were eager and excited to play at home for the first time all season.
“Their preparation today was really good,” head coach Rafael Flores said after the game. “Today they were really focused, warm-up was really sharp, and the sideline was ready.”
The team defeated Little Elm 3-0 on Jan. 30, a team that Flores said would be one of the toughest teams in the district to compete with, and were ready to carry that momentum to their home field. But with Newman Smith coming off an overtime shootout victory over Lake Dallas, they were poised to be competitors for the Lady Eagles.
“Their coach does a really good job with them… they played some good teams and had some decent results (in non-district).”
From the opening minutes of the game, the Lady Eagles had several offensive chances to the Smith backline. They created back to back scoring opportunities but couldn’t seem to find the back of the net, which would become the storyline for the rest of the game.
Smith utilized the speed of their attacking players to keep the Lady Eagles on their toes, but the midfield held strong, led by the team’s leading goal-scorer Kat Rogers. The senior played a big role in most opportunities for the Lady Eagles, using her skill and powerful left foot to send players up the field.
Junior goalkeeper Haley Foley had few duties in the first as Prosper contained the Lady Trojans for most of the half, keeping the majority of the play in Smith territory. Despite player after player created chances for the team to pull ahead, but the Lady Eagles couldn’t convert.
Finally, after 30 minutes of play, Prosper found the net on a second-chance ball from a corner kick. Sophomore Reese Cross collected a loose ball outside of the box and sent a curling cross into the foot of fellow sophomore Caroline Havard who tucked it past the Smith goalie for the lead.
Smith looked to equalize shortly after the Prosper goal, but the Lady Eagle defense was solid, rarely allowing any dangerous attacking play to build. The one-goal advantage held into the half.
The energy from the first half quickly carried into the opening minutes of the second as both teams looked to score early. Prosper jumped out with two quick scoring chances that nearly doubled the lead, but Smith’s keeper was adamant about keeping the team from adding another goal.
Smith’s tenacity continually stopped Prosper from adding another goal. The visiting team created chances of their own, challenging the Lady Eagles’ defense throughout the half. Their attacking surge was stunted, however, as Prosper snuck another goal midway through the half.
Junior Hadley Williams showcased her skill on the outside to beat her defender before sending a slicing ball into the box. The cross ricocheted off the shoulder of senior Cameron Larsen and into the goal for her second score of the season.
Larsen’s goal would be the last of the game, as the team held off a wave of late Smith attacks. The team’s 2-0 lead secured the first home victory of the season and a clean sweep in the first week of district.
The team will now turn their attention to next week’s matches against Carrollton RL Turner and McKinney North. The Lady Eagles will play at Turner on Feb. 6 and at home against North the following Friday Feb. 9. Both games will be played at 7 p.m.
“Every game at this point is going to be like what you saw tonight,” Flores said. “We’ve just got to focus on making our team the best they can be.”