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Jackson wins first district in a long-delayed rematch
JACKSON, Mo. -- A jubilant Jackson girls' soccer team celebrated the program's first district championship Tuesday with a 4-0 win over Cape Girardeau Central at Jackson Soccer Field.
The match was the first between the two county rivals since a classic 1-0 Central win in four overtimes at last season's district final. Rain wiped out three scheduled contests this season.
Top-seed Jackson's (15-1-1) convincing victory broke Central's five-year hold on the Class 4A, District 1 title.
"I'm just so proud of these girls," Jackson coach Zack Walton said. "We defended well and we had tremendous scoring balance."
Four players at three different positions scored goals for Jackson.
The Indians broke the ice with a goal from senior co-captain Dana Wright on the first of two assists from Courtney Urhahn at the 17-minute mark of the first half.
About six minutes later, defender Erin Mayfield came off the right wing, took a pass from Whitney Dietl and arched a high shot from 20 yards out over the Central goalie to send the Indians up 2-0.
Attempting to get back into the mix, Central tried to apply more pressure early in the second half, but an aggressive Jackson defense rebuffed every Tiger threat.
"We just couldn't finish when we had scoring opportunities," Central coach Tom Doyle said. "Jackson was the better team today."
Freshman forward Molly Hartmann got into the scoring act on a breakaway goal off Urhahn's second assist with about 12 minutes to go in the second half for a 3-0 Jackson lead.
The fourth and final goal was netted by midfielder Ashley Bartels with an assist from Amanda King at the 32-minute mark of the second half.
Jackson's senior defensive leader and co-captain Erin Hartmann, who has signed to play at Southeast Missouri State University next season, said team defense was the key.
"It's not any one person, but all of us working together."
Indian goalie Whitney Werner, who recorded her 14th shutout with four saves, echoed Hartmann's comments about the cohesiveness of the defensive unit.
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