The Ball High Lady Tors took a 3-1 penalty shootout win after being held to a 1-1 draw in regulation against the Galena Park Lady Jackets on Friday night at Kermit Courville Stadium.
A goal by Haile Hernandez at the end of the first half gave the Lady Tors a 1-0 lead at the break before Galena Park’s Leslie Johana Villanueva equalized with 3:36 remaining in the second half.
The Lady Tors started out on a strong note, coming close to putting the ball in the back of the net on numerous occasions. But the Lady Jackets’ strong defending thwarted Ball High’s chances.
Aubrey Mason came close to scoring in the 11th minute but was denied by Galena Park’s goalkeeper Leslie Garcia.
The Lady Jackets then started to get comfortable, as they began to create a few opportunities.
Galena Park saw a few chances come and go late in the first half before the Lady Tors could finally get on the board with Hernandez scoring with 32 seconds before halftime.
“We started out very strong in the beginning but then we kept them in the game,” said Ball High head coach Richard Pardo. “We had a few chances but we gave them the ball a lot toward the end and let them pressure us. This is certainly an attitude that we have to change when we play teams like this. We can’t do that, especially when we’re winning.”
The Lady Jackets nearly scored at the start of the second half as Melissa Garcia’s header off a corner kick by Cindy Veronica Flores went wide left of the net.
Villaneuva equalized with 3:36 left in the game.
In the penalty shootout, the Lady Tors missed the first two shots before Mason, Zoe George and Marie Louise Livanec all scored the last three goals for the Lady Tors.
Only Belen Estupinan could score from the penalty spot for the Lady Jackets during the shootout.
“It was exciting. It was almost a heartbreaker but I trusted the girls,” Pardo said. “The keeper did a great job on stopping some shots on goal.”
Going forward, Pardo is optimistic as the Lady Tors continue in the early stages of district play.
“At the end of the day, it’s how we play the game. We just have to take it one game at a time.”