By Cale Colosimo
RALEIGH -- In the third minute of overtime, Leesville Road forward Kelsey Weiss put in an easy rebound past Broughton goalkeeper Caroline Duncan for the match-winning goal in a 2-1 victory.
The initial shot came from Caroline Gentry, who attracted two Broughton defenders her way. That created enough space for Weiss, who was in front of the net, to score uncontested.
“[Weiss] was in the right place at the right time,” coach Paul Dinkenor said. “Caroline did a lot of approach work [for the goal], and Weiss got the rebound and knocked it in.”
The Pride (6-0, 4-0 Cap Eight 4-A) stayed in control for much of the first 10 minutes of the match. They stayed aggressive and almost scored two quick goals, with one shot on goal coming just 40 seconds into the match. Stephanie Bronson created the first scoring chance, then it was Weiss, who side-stepped a defender before shooting the ball a couple feet over the net.
“We played well early, and for whatever reason, we didn’t play our match,” Dinkenor said. “Have to give Broughton credit. It’s a good rivalry. This wasn’t going to be a 6-0 match.”
The Capitals (2-2, 1-2) stayed with the Pride, ranked No. 1 in the state, though they were outplayed early. The Caps tied it the match at 1-1 with a minute left in regulation when a shot from 20-yards out hit a Leesville defender and bounced over goalkeeper Zaria Maynard and into the net.
“We showed good character coming back [in overtime],” Dinkenor said. “Their equalizer was fully deserved. Our seniors got the team together in overtime and I thought once again we started to play soccer. We played good soccer in the overtime.”
In the 32nd minute, Pride midfielder Kelsey Reeves injured her knee and will be evaluated Thursday before they host the Apex Cougars, the second-ranked team in the state.
“[Reeves] is a key player for us,” Dinkenor said. “She has speed and skill and the ability to go at people one-on-one.”
Though Reeves was lost for the second half of the match, it didn’t take long after for the Pride to finally capitalize on their many scoring chances. Off a throw-in, in the 28th minute, Gentry had a clear angle at the Broughton net. Gentry came in from the left side of the field, and as she entered the penalty box, shot a quick pass to Stephanie Bronson for the first goal of the match.
“We need to understand we survived,” Dinkenor said. “Broughton played really well and we survived.”