CYPRESS — Needville girls soccer High School head coach Kristy Bradford said after her team’s Region III-4A quarterfinal playoffs match, “one mistake in soccer can cost you a game.”
The margin for error against Huffman Hargrave was already razor thin and an early second-half goal had Needville scrambling.
A game-tying goal would not come for Needville, and the Lady Jays fell 3-1 to Hargrave on Friday at the Berry Center in Cypress.
“The girls did everything they were asked to do,” Bradford said. “It just wasn’t our night.”
Needville finishes the year with a 22-8 record overall and a 10-2 mark in District 23-4A.
The Lady Jays reached the regional quarterfinals for the second year in a row.
The game started out strong for Needville. The Lady Jays turned away a few early chances for the Hargrave and were first to score.
In the 23rd minute of the first half, senior captain Chayla Ambriz drew out the Lady Falcons keeper with a charge at the goal.
Ambriz’s shot was stopped but not held by the Hargrave netminder.
Ambriz, the goalkeeper and two other defenders were tangled up, laying on the turf when senior Annalise Rangel lifted a shot over all of them and into the back of the net.
The Lady Falcons tied the game in the 13th minute after Needville failed to clear a ball out of the penalty box.
The match was 1-1 entering halftime after Needville got another clear shot on goal.
Sophomore Calista Martinez landed a long pass to Ambriz, who curved the ball from the corner onto the foot off senior Madison Schultz.
Schultz redirected the ball at the goal but directly at the Hargrave keeper.
The Lady Falcons scored four minutes into the second half after a failed clearance setup a clean run for senior Hannah Long to put Hargrave up 2-1.
A goal with four minutes reaming in the game by Long was the final nail in the coffin.
Friday was the final high school game for 10 seniors on the Needville roster and they will be missed by coach Bradford.
“I love them,” Bradford said. “I love them not just for the soccer but who they are as people.
“That is what I’m going to miss. I’m going to miss them as people more then anything else.”