If anyone had ever deserved a good day, it was W.T. Woodson's Jessie Davis.
During her team's Virginia AAA semifinal victory over North Stafford, the vocal, athletically gifted and normally take-charge defender had been humbled by off-target shots, bad bounces and speedy forwards.
However, when her team was given a reprieve by a North Stafford missed penalty kick in a shootout, all Davis needed was a trip back home for prom to refresh herself and put all the misfortune behind her.
"It cleared my head a lot. At the end of the game I was a wreck," said Davis, who was in tears and had to embraced by countless teammates after being the only W.T. Woodson shooter to miss in the 4-3 penalty shootout victory over the Wolverines. "Going home I was able to clear my thoughts and get away from soccer aspects. When I came back I wanted to play so bad."
There were hugs for Davis after the state final for a different reason as she was back to winning tackles and frustrating Centreville's talented forwards and midfielders. It was that kind of play from the junior that helped everyone forget what had happened against North Stafford the day before.
"All of us have bad days, but I wouldn't call it bad, we won, right," said All-Met Ashley Banks, who scored the game-winner in the 63rd minute. "This kind of washes away everything."
Gone too are the thoughts of the near-scare in the regional semifinal -- a shootout win over 2003 state champion Lake Braddock -- that nearly kept the Cavaliers out of the state tournament.
The goal by Banks and the Cavaliers defensive efforts ended the chances of another nerve-wracking finish -- much to the delight of Davis.
"I was expecting it to be a last-second game, with everything coming down to the last second," Davis said. "I was really glad we were able to score earlier just to contain the win."