EAST BEND — The Forbush Lady Falcons soccer team is headed back to the state championship after a 1-0 win on Tuesday night over Central Academy in the Western Regional Finals. After playing the night before in the semifinals, the Falcons didn’t let the back-to-back game deter them from their ultimate goal — to make it to another state championship.
The first half, the Falcons jumped on the ball early as they controlled the tempo for most of the opening 40 minutes. Forbush had break away after break away, but they were unable to find the back of the net until the 15th minute. After being subbed on two minutes before, Marley Martin made her mark on the game as she found the back of the net for the Falcons. The goal came at the right time for the Falcons, and gave them the burst of energy they needed to go into the half with a 1-0 lead.
“We missed a few easy scoring opportunities in the first half,” said Head Coach Kenan James. “We can’t leave goals on the field like that. We also gave up a few free kicks which is something you never want to do.”
In the second half, the game started to get chippy as both sides started fighting for every ball. Forbush keeper Calyn Davis was finally able to get her hand in the ring as she made several saves for the Falcons to keep the score 1-0. When Central drew a free-kick in the final 10 minutes of the game, Davis stood her ground in the box to make a save for Forbush. As the final whistle blew, the Falcons came away with a 1-0 win, and booked their ticket to the state championship.
“We knew what we had to do and we did it,” said James. “Davis made a few fantastic saves, and we defended really well throughout the game.”
This will be the fifth time the Falcons have made it to the championship game, and they will face a familiar foe in Carrboro. Last season the Falcons faced Carrboro in the 2A State Championship where they ended up falling 2-1. It took two overtime periods before Carrboro was able to score their go-ahead goal with just over six minutes to play in the second overtime. This time, the Falcons are looking to break their five-year curse and finally bring a state championship back to East Bend.
Forbush has a record of 27-0-1 going into Saturday’s game, while Carrboro has a record of 20-1-2. The Falcons have scored 133 goals, and allowed only eight in all competitions this season, while the Jaguars have scored 101 goals, and only allowed five.
“We’re just excited to go to the state championship,” said James. “We’re gonna enjoy this win tonight and we’ll think about Carrboro later this week.”
The Falcons face Carrboro at 11 a.m. on Saturday at the Dail Soccer Complex on the North Carolina State University campus in Raleigh. The game will be televised on Time Warner Cable channels 77 & 323. For those who don’t have TWC, follow @YadkinElkSports on Twitter for live updates.
Kristian Russell can be reached at 336-258-4052 or on Twitter @YadkinElkSports.