By Samantha Stallings
The Sixth Region nightcap featured the East versus the North on Wednesday night. Bullitt County rivals Bullitt East and North Bullitt faced off in the regional semifinals held at Mercy Academy.
Last year, the same two teams faced each other in this same game with the Bullitt East Lady Chargers winning 6-2. When these two teams had faced each other earlier this season, Bullitt East won 2-1. Tonight was no different. Bullitt East beat North Bullitt 4-3 to send the Lady Chargers to the regional championship game.
“This win was really big because we are the two most competitive with each other,” said Bullitt East head coach Steven Gentry, “I think every year it comes to that, like last year we ended up playing North Bullitt, then on to Mercy. I give North Bullitt credit. They pushed us right to the end. It was a good game”
Bullitt East’s Layne Cutler helped her team get off to a quick start. She scored a goal with 39:22 left on the clock until halftime. North Bullitt and Bullitt East battled it out as each team attempted to score with great saves from Bullitt East goalkeeper Cassie Lancaster and North Bullitt goalie Delayna Holman.
North Bullitt’s only goal of the first half came from Ally Johnson with 20:30 remaining to tie the score 1-1. However, Bullitt East kept pushing through and scored two more goals. One came from Taylor Buckler and the next was by Christian Foster with 4.8 seconds left. It would be the first of two goals from Foster tonight. Her goal put Bullitt East up 3-1 at the half.
In the second half, the Lady Eagles’ Katlyn Andres came out charging with a goal just ten seconds into the start of the clock to bring the score to 3-2. North Bullitt continued to battle through the second half with Bullitt East right at their tails. North Bullitt scored its last goal of the night with a second goal from Andres, tying the game at 3-3 with 33:45 remaining. North Bullitt continued to fight, but Foster second goal, and the final goal of the game, sealed the deal to put the final score at 4-3, Bullitt East.
Bullitt East will go on to the sixth region championship and face the Mercy Jaguars on Saturday. The Lady Chargers have faced Mercy in the past four regional finals, leaving Bullitt East just short of a championship.
Mercy is a state championship level program,” said Gentry. “They have the trophies and the experience to prove it. We played two games with them this year- lost 2-1 at Mercy and lost 3-2 at our place, so we are right there. We just need to shore up some things. In those kind of games it’s usually the mistakes more so than a great play, so if we can eliminate our mistakes I feel like we will have an opportunity. Of course we are playing on their home field and it will be to their advantage, but I’m looking forward to it”
The Sixth Region championship between Bullitt East and Mercy will be Saturday, Oct. 24 at 4 p.m. at Mercy Academy.