HHS soccer wins shootout in tourney semis

By The Hays Daily News

McPHERSON -- The Hays High School girls' soccer team had to play deep into the night, but it was worth it.

After no score through regulation and two overtimes Friday night, Hays High defeated host McPherson in a 3-0 shootout to advance to Saturday night's championship game of the sixth annual McPherson Invitational. It was HHS' first trip to the championship finals, where the Indians were scheduled to play Andover Central.

Hays High (3-0) peppered McPherson sophomore goalkeeper Shaelah White with 18 shots on goal, and hit the post three times, through regulation and two five-minute overtimes. McPherson (1-1) had seven shots on goal against HHS junior keeper Laura Truman. McPherson's best scoring opportunity came midway through the second half on a corner kick, but HHS junior Taylor Herman's header on the goal line kept the match scoreless.

Herman later left the game, re-injuring her ankle which was first hurt at the end of basketball season. Herman was not expected to play Saturday night. The game was stopped two other times for injuries to McPherson players.

The game had to be decided on PKs after 90 minutes of action on the field. HHS went first, with junior Shelby Dinkel scoring on her PK for a 1-0 lead. Truman -- in her first year as the starter on varsity -- then made the save against McPherson's shooter to keep the lead.

Indian sophomore Rachel Luedders scored to make it 2-0, then McPherson's second shooter sent the ball over the crossbar.

Junior Lauren Murphy scored for HHS for a 3-0 lead. McPherson had to score to keep the shootout going, but hit the post to send the Indians into the title game.

Hays High entered the championship game not having been scored on all season, keeping a clean sheet through 250 minutes.

After Saturday's game, Hays High is in its home opener on Tuesday, against Dodge City.