Lancaster 2, Minford 0
MINFORD — The Minford Lady Falcons fell for the first time in eight total matches this season, but they were at least competitive against a team two divisions larger.
That would be the Lancaster Golden Gales of Division I, which invaded the Falcons’ Nest on Thursday —and escaped with a 2-0 non-league shutout.
The loss dropped the Lady Falcons, following a pair of monumental one-point home wins over Rock Hill (7-6) and Wheelersburg (2-1), to 7-1-0.
All three matches took place in the past week, as Minford made the most of what it had left in the proverbial tank.
“I was proud of how our girls played against them, after having two physically and emotionally exhausting games in the last seven days. Lancaster is a fundamentally sound team. No errant passes, defensive errors, mishits…just strong technical and tactical play,” said Minford coach Shane Tieman. “It is good to play some games out of your weight class and see how you match up.”
Minford goalkeeper Neveah Porter posted an impressive 17 saves, 10 more than her Golden Gale keeping counterpart.
Lancaster landed first an unassisted goal only four-and-a-half minutes into the match —as Elena White scored to make it 1-0.
The only other goal was by Lancaster’s Lily Palmer, assisted by Allie Jurecki, with 10:45 remaining.
Minford 3, Wheelersburg 2
MINFORD — On Senior Night no less, the Minford Lady Falcons exacted a measure of revenge on the visiting Wheelersburg Lady Pirates —and captured a hard-fought 3-2 Southern Ohio Conference girls tennis tilt on Thursday.
The Lady Falcons, which lost 3-2 to the host Lady Pirates at the end of August, went a marathon three sets to take two of their three matches.
In the first doubles deciding contest, Minford’s Kailey Shaffer and Addi Lute outlasted the Lady Pirates’ pairing of Emma Brinkman and Aby Jones —prevailing 6-0, 3-6 and finally 6-1 for the overall team win.
The other three-setter went Minford’s way as well —with Miranda Johnson falling behind 6-2 to Emma Janney, but then Johnson rallied back for identical 6-4 triumphs in the final two sets.
The other three matches were straight-set sweeps, as Addy Akers at first singles for the Lady Falcons swept Maria Nolan 6-3 and 6-3.
Wheelersburg’s wins came at third singles and second doubles.
At third singles, Josalynn Conley claimed a 6-1 and 7-5 sweep of Minford’s Isabella Faith, followed by a 6-2 and 6-4 sweep by Brooklyn Howard and Avery Lowery of Ava Estepp and Allie McCray.
With the win, Minford raised its record to 10-3, as the only other team the Lady Falcons fell to so far for this season is Notre Dame.
The Lady Pirates are now 11-3 —with Waverly once and Notre Dame once being their only other defeats.
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