Adrienne Harris recorded a hat trick and the defense pitched a shutout Thursday as Carroll County’s girls’ soccer team defeated Galax 4-0 in Hillsville.
On a windy day at Tommy Thompson Field, Carroll County improved to 3-0 on the season thanks to a quick-strike offense and a stout defensive effort. Harris got the Lady Cavs on the board less than four minutes into the game, taking a pass from Kaylei Newman and scoring in close from the box for a 1-0 advantage.
The duo struck again for Carroll at the 10-minute mark. With a defender draped all over her, Newman got off a shot from the right hash that bounced off the opposite goalpost. The rebound came straight to Harris, who easily booted it in for a 2-0 advantage that stood until halftime.
Harris scored her third goal, completing the hat trick in the 58th minute on an assist from Haley Hurst. Harris threw the ball into Hurst, who one-touched it back to Harris for a shot from 30 yards away that curved over the goalie’s head for a 3-0 lead. Carroll was on the board two minutes later when Harris found Newman, who beat the keeper for a low shot and a 4-0 lead that stood up down the stretch.
With the big lead, Carroll was able to play all 21 of its players for at least 15 minutes. It was the first time the Cavs have had a fully healthy lineup this year.
“It was a real good team effort and our first shutout of the year, which was something we were stressing,” Carroll County head coach Marion Harris said. “We were doing a good job of keeping them from getting shots. We had a good rotation of five to six players. Three of the five back there are seniors, including our goalie Autumn Gravley. Izzy Largen and Laura Puckett are also seniors who have been with me for five years. We had two juniors back there in Haley Hurst and Jacie Newman who have been with me for four years, and then a good mix of freshmen in Lindsay Briley, Cassidy Edwards and Annabelle Sechrist. The last 20 minutes we had three freshmen and one senior anchoring the back four and they didn’t miss a beat.”
Harris is extremely pleased with how the team has played thus far in the 3-0 start. He said he believes it is the first 3-0 start in school history for the girls’ soccer team.
“I am nicknaming this team the team of firsts because if they keep playing like they are and growing as a team they have the potential to do a lot of things our teams haven’t been able to do,” he said. “There is so much to say about what Adrienne and Kaylei are doing so far offensively. In three games, Adrienne has already matched her total of nine goals from last season and Kaylei has matched her mark of four goals from last year. It is a duo I knew would be hard to stop. They are always on the same page and they are getting their teammates to get on the same page, too. It is a whole team effort all the way around and it’s nice to have 21 people out there going for a team goal and not individual goals.”
Even though Galax had possession of the ball for 50.4 percent of the game, Carroll dominated shots on goal, taking 22 compared to just four for the Maroon Tide.
“The kids are happy that they won, but they also know even though we won 4-0 there is more work to be done,” Harris said. “They are always asking for constructive criticism and what they can do to help their team win the game.”
Allen Worrell can be reached at (276) 779-4062 or on Twitter@AWorrellTCN