Soccer stuns Glenn

Published 9:01 am Thursday, May 3, 2018

Technically speaking, there wasn’t a lot to be gained or lost by the outcome of the Davie-Glenn varsity soccer game on April 26 in Kernersville. (Neither team is going to make the 4-A playoffs. Both teams were assured losing records weeks ago.)

But there was pride.

When the teams met at Davie on April 9, the War Eagles were easy prey, behind 4-0 by halftime before losing 5-2. They had come excruciatingly close in four Central Piedmont Conference losses: 4-3 in overtime to Reynolds and 2-0 setbacks to East Forsyth, Reagan and Reynolds.

But Davie rose from the ashes and experienced the other end of the spectrum at Glenn. With rain pouring down in the second half, Davie never trailed in a 3-1 win. The spirited breakthrough broke a seven-game CPC losing streak. It showed what can happen when all Davie’s players get it going at the same time.

“It was a hard-fought game and the girls stepped up,” coach Abe Senbel said. “When everybody contributes a little bit, it amounts to a lot as a team.”

Jessica Navarro scored the only goal in the first half. In the second half, Kassidie McDaniel did a throw-in, Navarro found Faith Bokeno and Davie’s leading scorer made it 2-0. It was the ninth goal for Bokeno, who has the most in three years. Claire Devereaux had 14 in 2015.

“It was their Senior Night (for 12 seniors),” Senbel said. “I think they came in with the memory of their 5-2 win, but they did not know that we did not have our star keeper (Maddie Tellup) and we didn’t have a couple more starters who were healthy for this game.”

Thirty seconds after Bokeno made it 2-0, the Bobcats (5-11-2 overall, 1-6 CPC) cut the margin in half. “It was just a mistake,” Senbel said. “I told the girls we need to work a little bit harder and be smart with our passes.”

With 10 minutes remaining, Jaci Grachen put Glenn away with a successful free kick. Glenn lost for the fourth time in five games since the win at Davie.

“I told Jaci: ‘I’ve been watching the goalkeeper. Just chip it at her. Don’t even try to place it,’” Senbel said. “That’s exactly what she did, and the ball went between her legs.”

There was nothing fluky about Davie’s first CPC win in seven tries.

“(Navarro and Grachen) did a number on their defense,” he said. “We had a 1-0 lead at halftime, but we had five or six missed shots. We could have easily won 9-1 or 9-0. I mean we dominated the game for sure.”

How about Georgia Visser, who played defense after spending most of the season as a goalie. She harassed Glenn’s foremost weapon, Bertha Valladares-Vasquez, with double-team help from Kam Parks, Kat Watts and Grachen.

“Georgia has turned out to be an excellent defensive player,” he said after Davie improved to 3-12-1 overall. “So we put Georgia on their best player. We asked the defense to double-team that player. (Vasquez) had some plays here and there, but basically we shut her down. Because Georgia’s in good shape, she kept up with her.”

Senbel also gave credit to goalie Tellup, outside midfielder Madison Smith and center midfielder Rachel Devereaux.

“Rachel had some very nice passes,” he said.