Stonewall 1, Osbourn 0
The Osbourn girls' soccer team may have claimed the top seed in the AAA Cedar Run District tournament, but Janna Pearson and Stonewall Jackson now have the confidence they need heading into the postseason.
Pearson knifed through the Osbourn defense to head in a corner kick with 21 minutes 14 seconds to play on Tuesday night to give the Raiders a 1-0 victory at home.
The win assures Stonewall Jackson (7-3-5, 3-2-1) of the second seed in next week's district tournament and gives the Raiders, who now own victories this season over all three district opponents, a little playoff swagger.
"I saw the corner, and I know finishing is a big part of what we need to do. I told myself that we have to win this game and go into the district tournament knowing that we can beat everybody in our district," said Pearson, whose team started the season 1-3-3. "Confidence plays a big role. . . . It is how you play and how you think you're going to play when you step onto the field. You have to step on the field with confidence, or you're not going to get anything accomplished."
Pearson got behind the Osbourn defense a second time with just more than 10 minutes to play, but pressure from goalie Lauren Fenner forced Pearson's pass to be too strong and wide of the goal.
The Eagles (6-9-1, 4-1-1), who had clinched the district regular season title and a second consecutive berth in the Northwestern Region tournament, never really got the great scoring chance to tie the game.
However, Osbourn Coach Jodi Kranich said Tuesday's loss should only help her team increase its focus in the playoffs.
"I'm not going to stress about it, and hopefully we'll get to see them again in the district finals," Kranich said. "In a way this could be a good thing, because [my team] is going to go in seeking revenge to a certain level. There's a lot of competition between these two teams and a strong rivalry."