Feb 23, 2023
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Photo provided by TWHS HC Frankie Whitlock
The UIL Soccer Area Round provided another series of intense competitions between the finest clubs Texas has to offer.
Following some exceptional performances, which featured a myriad of nail-biters on the pitch, several Houston teams are advancing to the Regional Quarterfinals, with fans in tow.
Here are the H-Town teams (6A-Girls) primed to maintain their momentum in Round No. 3 of the UIL postseason this Friday and Saturday.
6A Girls Soccer
*Record Format: W-L-T (Tournament games not included)
*List is ordered alphabetically
2022-23 Regular Season: 9-5-3/Finished 4th in District 21-6A
Head Coach: Tim Franciskovich
- Bi-District: 1-0 Win v. Deer Park
- Area Round: 3-1 Win v. Clear Springs
Regional Quarterfinals Matchup: v. Kingwood
2022-23 Regular Season: 14-0-1/District 16-6A Champions (13-0-1)
Head Coach: Katie Bourgeois
- Bi-District: 4-1 Win v. Tomball Memorial
- Area Round: 1-0 Win v. Grand Oaks
Difference-Maker: Junior Forward Anaiyah Robinson-- Scored the game-winning goal for Bridgeland in their close match against Grand Oaks
Regional Quarterfinals Matchup: v. Tomball
Photo provided by Bridgeland HC Katie Bourgeois
Clear Lake Falcons
2022-23 Regular Season: 14-0-2/District 24-6A Champions (11-0-1)
: Lisa Manis
- Bi-District: 8-1 Win over Alief Elsik
- Area Round: 1-1 (3-2 Penalty Shootout) Win v. West Brook
Difference-Maker: "As far as our MVP, last night was a true team effort, so as a coach I cannot say that one player stood out," said Coach Manis. "Those girls truly worked as a unit and took care of business."
Regional Quarterfinalist Matchup: v. Summer Creek
Photo provided by Coach Manis
2022-23 Regular Season: 11-1/District 21-6A Champions (9-1)
Head Coach: Pres Holcomb
- Bi-District: 8-0 Win v. Pasadena
- Area Round: 1-0 Win v. Clear Creek
Difference-Maker: Sophomore Forward Makenzie Black-- Scored the game's lone goal to propel Kingwood past Clear Creek
Regional Quarterfinals Matchup: v. Atascocita
Photo provided by Kingwood HC Pres Holcomb
Klein Oak Panthers
2022-23 Regular Season: 11-2-1/Finished 2nd in District 15-6A
Head Coach: Erin Poyner
- Bi-District: 4-0 Win v. Cy Woods
- Area Round: 4-0 Win v. College Park
Regional Quarterfinals Matchup: v. The Woodlands
Ridge Point Panthers
2022-23 Regular Season: 15-0-2/District 20-6A Champions (14-0-2)
Head Coach: Evelyn Torres
- Bi-District: 1-0 Win v. Cinco Ranch
- Area Round: 4-0 Win v. Cy-Fair
Regional Quarterfinals Matchup: v. Seven Lakes
Jamie Wright (VYPE)
Seven Lakes Spartans
2022-23 Regular Season: 14-0-2/District 19-6A Champions
Head Coach: Kaitlyn Eidson
- Bi-District: 3-1 Win v. George Ranch
- Area Round: 2-1 Win v. Houston Memorial
Difference-Maker: Seven Lakes' Senior Captains Maddie RIch, Becca Romero, Katie Lennon, and Haydan Erick-- Represented each position group, contributed to both of the Spartans' goals, while playing with nagging injuries.
Regional Quarterfinals Matchup: v. Ridge Point
Photo provided by Seven Lakes JV HC Steven Poss
2022-23 Regular Season: 16-0-1/District 17-6A Champions (14-0)
Head Coach: David Walters
- Bi-District: 9-0 Win v.Houston Westside
- Area Round: 5-0 Win v. FB Elkins
Difference-Maker: Senior MF Kristin Geczik-- Was the team's workhorse in coverage and shutting down the Elkins counter attack
Regional Quarterfinals Matchup: v. Katy Tompkins
Photo provided by Stratford HC David Walters
Summer Creek Bulldogs
2022-23 Regular Season: 12-4/Finished 3rd in District 21-6A
Head Coach: Becky Cobb
- Bi-District: 5-0 Win v. Pasadena Memorial
- Area Round: 3-1 Win v. Clear Falls
Difference-Maker: Freshman Forward Brooke Atkins-- Scored all three goals for the Bulldogs to headline the SCHS attack
Regional Quarterfinals Matchup: v. Clear Lake
The Woodlands Highlanders:
2022-23 Regular Season: 15-0-1/District 13-6A Champions
Head Coach: Frankie Whitlock
- Bi-District: 8-0 Win v. Spring
- Area Round: 4-4 (4-3 Penalty Shootout) Win v. Klein
Difference-Maker:Renata Larracilla (So. MF) & Caroline White (Sr. MF)-- Larracilla scored one of the Highlanders' regulation goals, while White had an assist. Furthermore, White scored the game-deciding PK to cap off an absolute thriller of a win against Klein.
Regional Quarterfinals Matchup: v. Klein Oak
Photo provided by TWHS HC Frankie Whitlock
2022-23 Regular Season: 14-2/District 15-6A Champions (12-2)
Head Coach: Victoria Parsons
- Bi-District: 3-1 Win v. Langham Creek
- Area Round: 3-1 Win v. Willis
Difference-Maker: Tomball's senior starters, Caroline Fowlkes (2 goals), Kendall Hall (2 assists), Ximena Hammeken, and team captain Madeline McFarland provided the experience on the pitch to lead the Lady Cougars to victory.
Regional Quarterfinals Matchup: v. Bridgeland
Photo provided by Tomball HC Victoria Parsons
2022-23 Regular Season: 14-1-2/Finished 2nd in District 19-6A
Head Coach: Jarrett Shipman
- Bi-District: 5-2 Win v. Fort Bend Clements
- Area Round: 4-2 Win v. Houston Lamar
Regional Quarterfinals Matchup: v. Stratford
CLICK HERE TO KEEP UP WITH THE UIL 6A GIRLS BRACKETS (Regions 1 & 2)
CLICK HERE TO KEEP UP WITH THE UIL 6A GIRLS BRACKETS (Regions 3 & 4)
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Photo taken by Loyd Hendricks (Pearland)
Pearland soccer is on the precipice of making history for their school.
Following their recent 2-1 victory over Kingwood in the Area Round, the Oilers are preparing to face off against Dobie in the Regional Quarterfinals in order to proceed to the Semis, which would be the furthest that Pearland has ever advanced in the State Tournament.
Pearland Soccer followinf their Area Round Championship
The Oilers have enjoyed an impressive 14-3-10 (W-L-T) season and an even greater postseason, which can be attributed to their star athletes and experienced coaching.
However, what is uncommonly astounding about this team is the fact that four of their athletes are currently honoring their Islamic heritage through Ramadan, which entails an entire month of fasting, prayer, reflection and community.
Photo by Loyd Hendricks (Pearland)
This year’s Ramadan is taking place during the heat of UIL postseason soccer (March 22-April 10), which means that these players cannot eat or drink from dusk to dawn, which could significantly impact the energy that one has.
However, these remarkable young players, including Pearland’s star forward Yousef Elnokali (2022 District 23-6A OPOY), who scored a hat trick in the Bi-District round, have shown their mettle in the face of adversity.
Pearland's Yousef ElnokaliPhoto by Loyd Hendricks (Pearland)
“What’s amazing to me is that they [Pearland’s Muslim players] kind of train their bodies to endure,” said coach Scott Macneish. “Despite not having any food or water throughout the day they still manage to stand out. Along with Yousef [Elnokali], one of my starting defenders, Ashraf Adi (Sr.), runs more than anybody since he’s kind of a wingback. They do such an amazing job, and I don’t know how they do it.”
In addition, Macneish has communicated with the coaches of opposing teams ahead of games to see if they would be willing to stop play for a moment to allow the Muslim players to eat and drink water when they’re finally permitted to at 7:35 pm.
Pearland's Ashraf AdiPhoto by Loyd Hendricks (Pearland)
Despite the competitive nature of the postseason, Macneish acknowledged how supportive the coaches were of this request.
“The other teams’ coaches, [Daniel] Edinburgh at Dickinson, [Bryan] Jennings at Kingwood and [Justo] Manrique at Dobie haven’t even blinked when I asked this of them,” he said. “The coolest thing was when Ramadan broke when we played Dickinson, and as soon as 7:35 came around, everybody was giving our four Muslim players drinks while they ate, and everyone applauded for them. It was just incredible.”
Soccer is one of the most diverse sports in the world, which is being put on full display by Pearland.
Photo by Loyd Hendricks
“What’s cool is that we do have a team that’s diverse,” Macneish said. “We have a guy from Trinidad Tobago, we have some Asian players, as well as some Hispanic, White and African American players. Somehow, we’re able to kind of mesh it up into a melting pot and make this stellar team. Everybody sort of gets a lesson on different cultures, which is what makes this team and this game so special.”
This is an impressive team on multiple fronts. Stay tuned for more with Pearland soccer.
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VYPE caught up with Coach Steven Hutcherson of Crosby Baseball at the VYPE Crosby ISD Spring Media Day about the new season and more!
Check out the interview below!
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