Unbelievable ride continues
Cassville girls soccer advances to district title match
The first person to race on the field on Monday to celebrate Cassville’s stunning 2-1 overtime win over Monett was Lady Wildcats Coach Jake Forste.
Not more than a half step behind was the entire bench of the Lady Wildcats screaming and celebrating at the top of their lungs.
The team rushed toward sophomore Maddie Bowyer, who moments earlier secured the first district victory and subsequent championship berth for the Lady Wildcats, and did so in the Cassville girls team’s inaugural varsity season.
“I wanted it so bad,” Bowyer said. “I wanted to beat Monett so bad. This game, we knew that if we just kept playing we could do it. We played so hard tonight.”
The Lady Wildcats dominated play in the first half and outshot the Lady Cubs 11-2, but had no goals to show for the effort.
Monett opened the second half controlling the first 15 minutes of play, but could not find the back of the net.
The Lady Wildcats missed a golden opportunity with a shot with 23 minutes left in regulation, hitting the near post and spun just at the goal line before Monett cleared the ball.
At the 9-minute mark, Monett failed to clear another Cassville wave and Juliette Okel made the Purple and Gold pay with a flick of her foot, hitting a rolling ball into the bottom of the crossbar and bouncing it beyond the goal line.
Cassville appeared headed to victory, controlling the pace of play for the next 8 minutes.
In a desperation drive, Monett threw everything into a one last attack, Jaida Worm, a freshmen, scored the equalizer with just 26 seconds left in regulation.
“That was big for them,” Bowyer said. “We knew that we had to go back out and win the game, and we weren’t going to let up.”
It took 10 minutes, but Bowyer provided the winning touch, corralling the ball about 40 yards away and spreading the leaky Lady Cub defense down the middle of the field the for an easy 5-yard point-blank shot, which she buried in the left corner.
The goal set off the huge team celebration.
“We’ve won our last eight games,” said Forste. “This is the biggest win ever for the program. To come here and get to play for a district title in our first year is incredible. This game was intense, and Monett played great all night. They never quit. I’m just so proud of our girls for never backing away from the challenge.”
Cassville will play top seeded Logan-Rogersville at 4 p.m. Wednesday for the title.