Submitted by John Heid, sports information director at Fellowship Christian School
When the Fellowship Christian School varsity girls soccer team’s offense is clicking, the Lady Paladins are tough to beat.
That proved to be the case on Wednesday night (May 7) as FCS cruised past Atlanta International School 6-0 at Paladin Field in the second round of the Single A State Playoffs.
With the victory, FCS advances to the state quarterfinals. The Lady Paladins will host Paideia School of Druid Hills at Paladin Field on Saturday, May 10 at 4 p.m. Paideia defeated Mount Paran Christian School in Wednesday’s other second-round matchup.
Sophomore Megan Hudgens’ hat trick led Fellowship (10-4 overall) against AIS. The Lady Paladins extended their season-best win streak to four games.
“Our strikers stuck to the game plan,” head coach Trip Hughes said. “It was a phenomenal game for us. Our team played very well.”
The Lady Paladins took a 3-0 first-half lead on goals by Hudgens, freshman Rachel Haigwood and junior Abigail Freemyer.
FCS extended the lead to 4-0 on sophomore Alex Lear’s tally at 28:09 of the second half. Freemyer assisted that goal.
“It was her first game in three months, and she scored a goal,” Hughes said of Lear. ”A great effort for her tonight! But I am really super proud of all the girls.”
Hudgens scored back-to-back goals at 21:57 and 20:30 to give the final count.
“They really sparked our offense,” Hughes said about Lear and Hudgens. “They were tough to defend.”
On the defensive side, senior goalkeepers Anna Soderlund and Amanda Floyd combined to post the shutout. Floyd relieved Soderlund with 7:42 to go.
“Anna was very solid in the net,” Hughes said. “She and Amanda got the job done tonight to keep them off the scoreboard.”
The FCS coach was able to get his whole team valuable playing time against AIS.
“We got 28 girls into the game,” Hughes said. “Every single player had playing time and played hard. That is huge in a second-round playoff game.”
Following a 2-2 start to the season, the Lady Paladins have gone 8-2 over their past 10 contests.
FCS, winners of seven of its last eight contests, posted a three-game win streak from March 8-11. Following a 2-1 overtime loss to Holy Innocents’ Episcopal School at Paladin Field on March 25, Fellowship began its’ current win streak with a 4-1 win at Pinecrest Academy on April 8.
The state semifinals are slated for May 14, and the state finals will be played May 16-17.