Hart High freshman Tori Waldeck gathered the ball and hurtled down the sideline. Teammate Taylor Moorehead was open, but Waldeck waited, and waited and waited. The window never closed. Waldeck sent a dazzling cross that Moorehead one-timed out of the air and into the net for the Indians’ final goal in a 3-1 win over Liberty High of Bakersfield on Friday in the Hart Soccer Showcase championship.
The Indians couldn’t capitalize on numerous first-half chances, but the window for offensive explosion didn’t close. Even if it had, Hart likely would have forced its way through, scoring three goals in the first 14 minutes of the second frame for a third straight title in its home tournament. “I thought that we needed a little bit more fire and desire to get to those crosses to make something happen (in the first half),” said Hart coach Guilherme Mitrovitch, whose team improved to 11-2-1. “… I felt we weren’t being ruthless in the attacking third.” That changed. Isabela Penaranda opened the scoring in the 44th minute when she booted a ball that had eyes. The shot sliced its way between Liberty defenders and past the keeper for a 1-0 lead. Three minutes later, Moorehead chipped a corner kick into the box where Brooke Rickard headed it in. Then Waldeck initiated Hart’s final goal. “I couldn’t have asked for a better ball,” Moorehead said. Emily Lostetter’s goal in the 65th minute for Liberty proved to be meaningless other than it meant Hart didn’t finish the five-game tournament without giving up a goal. It had outscored its previous four opponents by a cumulative score of 8-0.
Girls soccer: The 2016 Hart Soccer Showcase champions. pic.twitter.com/nAp9s67uFe— Signal Sports (@SignalSports) December 30, 2016