By Adam Gore/Special to the Journal
NEW ALBANY – New Albany’s Summer Sanderson may have felt she was on the firing line on Saturday.
The senior goalkeeper stopped 16 of 27 shot attempts by the Germantown Lady Mavericks (11-9-2) in the Lady Bulldogs’ (7-9) 5-0 loss in the Class 4A North State semifinals.
Sanderson, who has only played two seasons of competitive soccer, stopped the first three Germantown attempts before Rachel Watters netted the first goal of the day off a rebound in the 11th minute.
“Summer made a lot of great saves today,” said New Albany head coach Les Hunington. “None of the goals against us could be attributed to her lack of effort or ability.”
Watters extended the Lady Mavs lead to 2-0 in the 20th minute before Megan Laplante and Darby Hughes scored to give the Lady Mavericks a 4-0 lead at intermission.
Sanderson continued her dominate play in net stopping the first six Germantown attempts of the second half before Taylor Thrasher was able to score the final goal on a right-footed rebound in the 47th minute.
“This is the first time this season I can truly say we were beaten by the better team,” Hunington said. “I’m proud of everyone of our girls because they didn’t quit, they kept trying, they gave it their all and that’s all I could have asked from them.”
The second-round playoff appearance was the deepest run in the playoffs in the history of the Lady Bulldogs soccer program and despite the loss Hunington believes the future will only get brighter for his girls.
“We had a lot of seventh graders along with an eight grader that saw a lot of action today,” Hunington said. “To get the amount of play against such a quality opponent helps make our future look good.”
Germantown will advance to the Class 4A North State title game against Florence.