It was difficult to tell what the Arab varsity girls soccer players were most excited about Tuesday before Senior Night activities.
Was it the 4A-5A, Area 13 championship they clinched on Monday night? Or maybe the anticipation of last night’s first-round playoff match against Russellville? Or was it the joy of sending their senior teammates off with hugs and gifts?
It was undoubtedly a little of all three, but a lot of it was Monday’s area-clinching win and who it came against.
The Lady Knights beat Guntersville 1-0 in overtime to finish the season 7-1 in the area, clinching a top seed and a home first-round playoff match.
The area title was great and playing the first-round match at home was wonderful. But Arab’s girls (9-6-2 overall) were absolutely giddy about beating Guntersville for the first time in program history.
“Ever,” emphasized goalkeeper Gracie Davidson, who along with backup Natalie McBrayer authored seven shutouts this season, including six in a row.
Alex Murray scored the game-winner against Guntersville. Murray scored two more in the Lady Knights’ 3-2 win over Hartselle on Tuesday. Senior Madison Anderson celebrated the evening by scoring the other goal.
The seniors – Anderson, Morgan Weaver, Blake Burgett, McKenzie Berry, Sarah Davidson and Linley McNeese – had a lot to celebrate, including being a part of three consecutive area championships and (at least) two straight state Final Four appearances.
For the boys, seniors honored were Payton Breeding, Dalton Hunt, Cole Simmons, Harrison Hall, Ridge Hunt, Kyle King, Colin Stewart, Sammy Tankersley and Cody Wagner.
Later in the evening, they went out and helped defeat Hartselle, also, 3-0.
Goals were scored by Aidan Tucker, Alex Meza and Harrison Hall, who converted a beautiful pass/assist from Cody Wagner for the score.
The boys, Area 13 runners-up, played at West Morgan last night in a first-round playoff match.
The JV girls defeated New Hope 3-0 on Monday but lost to Hartselle, 4-3.