Arts & Entertainment

Mason High Girls Storm into Finals

MASON’S RACHEL KAZMAN CONTROLS THE BALL in the Mustangs’ 6-0 Tuesday victory over Madison County in the Bull Run Semifinals. (Photo: News-Press)The George Mason High School varsity girls soccer team cruised to a 6-0 victory over the Madison County Mountaineers Tuesday night in the semifinals of the Bull Run District Tournament. The win put the girls in the finals, and also clinched them a spot in the regional tournament.

Sophomore midfielder Haley Turner got the scoring started with the first goal of the game, and the Mustangs quickly jumped out to a 2-0 lead following sophomore midfielder Kim Kenny’s goal in the 10th minute.

Kenny added her second goal of the game with 21:28 remaining in the first half off of a corner kick. Senior midfielder Katie Turner set up sophomore forward Mayssa Chehata with a beautiful cross in the 24th minute, and Chehata put the ball in the back of the net to give the Mustangs a 4-0 halftime lead.

Less than two minutes into the second half, senior midfielder Roxanne Sweeney added another goal off of junior midfielder Rachel Kazman’s corner kick, one of several well-executed set pieces throughout the game, extending the Mustang lead to 5-0. Chehata put in her second goal of the game with 3:24 remaining, pushing the score to the final 6-0 tally.

The Mustangs controlled every aspect of the game and the score would likely have been even more lopsided were it not for the solid goalkeeping of the Mountaineers. Throughout the game Mason exhibited crisp passing and excellent spacing, as they dominated possession of the ball.

“I think [Mason’s performance] was what we wanted today,” Mason Head Coach Jennifer Parsons said. “We wanted just to get the win and not exert too much energy.”

The Mustangs can now look to Thursday’s tournament final against Clarke County High School. Mason lost to Clarke in both meetings this season, by scores of 3-1 and, at home on senior night, 1-0.

Parsons expects today’s (May 24) final at Clarke to be a hard-fought affair.

“It’s going to be a tough game, it always is with them,” Parsons said. “I think the girls are ready for it. They are ready for a win against them. I think it’s perfect timing.”

While both teams have already clinched spots in the regional tournament, today’s game is important because the winner will get home field advantage for much of the regional tournament and will also receive a bye on Memorial Day, whereas the loser will have to play on Memorial Day and will also have to play on the road should they advance to the semifinals.

“There’s definitely incentive to win the Districts, that’s for sure,” Parsons said.

The Bull Run District Tournament served as a prime example of the great discrepancy in competition throughout the district. On one end of the spectrum, the Mustangs face competition comparable to Madison County (Mason has now won nine games this season by six goals or more), and then they have to turn around and face a very talented team in Clarke County.

Parsons described the disparity in competition as a challenge for her team.

“I think it’s been tough,” Parsons said. “We haven’t had as many competitive games as I would have liked throughout the season. It’s tough to go from playing a team where you win by the slaughter rule in 60 minutes and then having to change your mentality and play against a really good team like Clarke. It’s been tough mentally on the girls more than anything.”

Parsons said that the girls will still be ready to play against Clarke today, however.

“They get really excited for the Clarke game because they know that it’s going to be a good soccer game,” Parsons said.