FAYETTEVILLE -- A weather delay did not stop the Harrison girls soccer team from winning its second consecutive Class 5A state championship.
The Lady Goblins defeated Maumelle 3-1 on Friday at Razorback Field on the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville campus to earn back-to-back titles and their sixth overall.
Harrison (15-7-2), the 5A-West champion, also won state championships in 2002, 2004, 2011, 2014 and 2016.
"It's special. They don't come around every day," Harrison Coach Chris Pratt said. "You have to take each one every day and celebrate it fully.
"This one is more special because we've never gone back to back. I couldn't think of a better group for this to happen to."
Harrison led Maumelle 3-1 with 20:05 remaining when a weather delay was called. The delay lasted 1 hour, 4 minutes.
Pratt said his team relaxed in Fayetteville High School's gymnasium, which is across the street from Razorback Field.
Pratt welcomed the break.
"Our legs were weary," Pratt said. "We spent a lot of energy in the first half, which was our plan, to put pressure on them.
"We're not used to grass. We're not used to humidity like this. It took a lot out of us. We were able to get back and finish out the game."
In the final 20 minutes, Maumelle (15-7), the 5A-West's No. 2 seed, had one shot on goal with 14:40 left. Maumelle Coach Jessica Beaver said the delay slowed down her team's momentum.
"We got in panic mode the last two minutes," Beaver said. "We got out of our own game and tried to play direct and kick it up the field. We're more of a possession-type of team.
"We got out of our game plan."
Senior Kaleigh Harris and sophomores Claire Doshier and Brylie Parker scored for Harrison. Sophomore goalkeeper Makayla Campbell had eight saves for the Lady Goblins, who won their final nine matches.
Junior Everly Albright had Maumelle's lone goal. Lady Hornets senior goalkeeper Madison McPeak finished with seven saves.
The Lady Goblins took a 1-0 lead in the first two minutes with Harris' goal at 38:21.
Harrison extended its lead to 2-0 with 14:22 left in the half. Parker's corner kick set up Doshier's goal.
Maumelle pulled within 2-1 at the 12:30 mark on Albright's goal from 15 yards out.
Parker scored with 9:03 left in the half to make it 3-1 Harrison.
Maumelle was playing in its second state championship match in four seasons. Beaver said experience was a factor in Friday's match.
"Our end goal is to always make it to the state championship game, because I think it's possible every season," Beaver said. "Harrison was here last year, and I think sometimes having the experience of being here back to back helps. You're used to the pressure. You're used to the crowds."
Last season, Parker started as a freshman for Harrison's fifth state championship team.
"We've grown as a team. That's what it's taken to get here," Parker said. "It's a team effort and it's determination, honestly."
Today’s girls soccer final at a glance
Cabot (23-2) vs.
GAME TIME 4 p.m. WHERE Razorback Field, Fayetteville
CONFERENCE 7A-Central (14-0) COACH Alex Castillo GOALS FOR/AGAINST 96/23 WINNING STREAK 18 NOTEWORTHY Junior Tristyn Edgar has scored 33 goals and added 14 assists for the Lady Panthers. … Senior Hadley Dickinson has posted 16 goals with a team-high 23 assists.
CONFERENCE 7A-West (14-0) COACH Kristina Henry GOALS FOR/AGAINST 105/15 WINNING STREAK 10 NOTEWORTHY Bentonville has won six of the past eight state titles. … Senior Lauren Hargus has scored 29 goals and added 23 assists. … Senior Emma Welch has 14 goals and 12 assists. … Bentonville defeated Cabot 3-0 in the 2016 title game.
Sports on 05/20/2017
Print Headline: Harrison secures first back to back