Oak Mountain girls beat Thompson to finish area play unbeaten
By SETH HAGAN | For the Reporter
ALABASTER – After a long, close win against Hoover the night before, the Oak Mountain offense took some time to get back into rhythm, but by the end of the evening on Wednesday, April 17, the Eagles were back to feeling like their old selves.
The No. 2 Eagles used an incredible stretch late in the first half to put away the Thompson Warriors on the road, 6-0, and finish as undefeated area champions.
“We started slow and the second half definitely wasn’t anywhere near our best,” said Oak Mountain head coach Chris Blight. “But we had a spell of about 20 minutes where we managed to lock the game up so that was key for us.”
The Eagles’ defense held down the fort until the rest of the team got their legs underneath them and didn’t allow a single shot in the first half.
However, once the offense caught up, the flood gates opened for Oak Mountain. Danielle Retief was everywhere for the Eagles scoring in a myriad of ways.
Oak Mountain finally broke through the Warriors’ defense in the 20th minute as Retief took a through pass and broke so far away she dribbled 25 yards alone before beating the goalie with a shot to the left corner for the 1-0 lead.
It was the first of five straight goals for Danielle all in a 15-minute period of head-turning dominance.
Three minutes later, a long clearance from the goalie met a teammate’s header and popped the ball back into play where Retief controlled it in stride, made one move and was gone again for an easy one-on-one goal.
“Dani was phenomenal today, she works so hard out there,” Blight said. “Part of why she’s so great is her first touch, and she’s a team player, but she scored five goals today so for us that was huge.”
Retief later scored off two rebounds and a bad clearance—a problem for Thompson for much of the contest. The Warriors didn’t record a shot until six minutes into the second half and weren’t able to put a shot on goal all night.
The Eagles’ final goal came in the 58th minute as Emmi Long charged down to Thompson’s baseline. From there, Long lost her defender with a great move and sent a sharp pass to Kailyn Maynard who easily deflected the ball into the goal for the game’s final score.
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