By DAVID ERSOFF, Journal Sports
The Shreveport United 03 girls club soccer team advanced to the Louisiana Soccer Association’s State Cup semifinals this Saturday by going 1-1-1 in the preliminary round last weekend in Lafayette. They join the SU 03 boys team, which earned a bye straight to the semifinals, Saturday in Baton Rouge.
The SU 04 boys team could not overcome multiple injuries, and was not able to advance to the semifinals, going 0-3 in the preliminaries.
The SU 03 girls began the preliminaries Saturday against Thibodaux, who tied them during the regular season. They took a 1-0 lead on a goal by Landry Jones, with Khiana Roraback making the assist. They were able to hold that edge until with 20 minutes left in the game a Thibodaux player hit a rocket that found the back of the net. The game remained tied when the final whistle blew. Bailey Moore came up big in goal, making multiple game saving saves for Shreveport United.
Sunday morning the Shreveport team faced off with the New Orleans Spartans, who they topped 2-1 during the regular season. The result this time was only briefly in question, with United dominating play. Roraback scored a pair of goals, with assists from Erin Campbell and Madalyn Van Devender. Moore made a few saves, but was never pressed. This win secured their advancement to the following weekend. The question remaining: what seed they would end up with following game 3.
Sunday afternoon’s game was against a familiar foe, seven-time reigning State Cup champion Baton Rouge Black. Both teams were assured of advancement. The first half was hard fought, with the United girls having a few good chances to score, but unable to break through. Moore had four saves in the half. In added time a Shreveport defender was called for a foul in the box, giving Baton Rouge a penalty kick, which it converted. The second half played out similarly, except there was no penalty kick and the score stood 1-0 Black at the end.
The SU 03 girls earned the third seed and will rematch against No. 2 Baton Rouge Black on Saturday at 10:45 a.m. in Baton Rouge. Despite last Sunday’s outcome, the United girls have a lot on confidence, having not surrendered a goal in the flow of play. The formula to stopping them has been found. The winner will face the winner of the other semifinal game between top-seeded Cajun Rush and No. 4 Thibodaux in the championship contest Sunday at 9 a.m. in Baton Rouge.
The Shreveport United 03 boys team, seeded fourth, will face the No. 1 LA Fire Navy Saturday at 10:45 in Baton Rouge. They fell to LA Fire 3-1 on March 12 during the regular season play. The winner will meet either Baton Rouge Black or Mandeville Soccer Club in the final Sunday at 2.
The 03 boys team is coached by Rob Jump. The team is full of All District and some SBJ All-Metro players from the recently completed prep season. They hope to shock the league by winning the state title from the fourth seed.