Varsity girls soccer wrapped up their 2019 season on May 16 with a loss in the quarter finals of the Virginia Independent Schools state tournament, dropping 2-0 to Fredericksburg Christian in a hard fought game.
Flames Goalkeeper Caroline Hayes summed up her soccer career in an interview with the Daily News-Record. Her gracious attitude exemplifies the spirit of the Flames team. “We’ve got something special here,” said Dave Bechler, athletic director. “The reporter noticed and commented on our team’s attitude and spirit on the bench after a hard loss. That says a lot about our coaching staff and team. I’m really proud of this season.”
The following article by Jim Sacco appeared in the May 16, 2019 issue of the Daily News-Record
Izadi, Eagles End Flames’ Season In VISAA Girls Soccer Quarterfinals
HARRISONBURG — Staring down the Howitzer leg of Eastern Mennonite junior Abby Stapleton on a one-on-one, Bella Izadi didn’t blink.
Instead, the freshman keeper for Fredericksburg Christian punched the shot away and watched her defense clear it back toward the other side of the pitch, pumping her fist as the Flames offense slowly turned and headed back to midfield.
“Those were some shots,” Izadi said.
And from the feet of Eastern Mennonite players, those shots just kept coming. And Izadi, her black hair pulled back tight into a ponytail, turned them all away with a dizzying array of dives and jabs.
Izadi finished with 17 saves, frustrated too many EMHS attacks to count with her guile and aggressive keeping — coming out to meet attackers instead of waiting for them to shoot — and the fifth-seeded Eagles, the runners-up out of the Delaney Athletic Conference, ousted No. 4 Eastern Mennonite with a 2-0 win in the Virginia Independent Schools Athletic Association girls soccer quarterfinals Wednesday in Harrisonburg.
“We ran into a goalkeeper today that played lights out,” said EMHS coach Andrew Gascho. “We created chances. We’re a team that creates chances, and we ran into a player that played her best game of the year.”