Mansfield Sports

Standout performances advance teams to area round

Lake Ridge’s Celia Duarte scored a hat trick in the bi-district round.
Lake Ridge’s Celia Duarte scored a hat trick in the bi-district round.

Two hat tricks and a two-goal performance pushed Mansfield, Mansfield Lake Ridge and Mansfield Legacy into the area round of the girls soccer playoffs in bi-district play last week.

Jaci Rozear of Mansfield and Celia Duarte of Lake Ridge each scored three goals, while Heaven Conner added two goals for Legacy.

In addition to Rozear’s three scores, Destiny Culclager added another goal as Mansfield handled Abilene, 4-2.

Emily Lass added a goal for Legacy as the Lady Broncos and Lake Ridge posted 3-0 shutouts of Cleburne and Granbury, respectively.

The area round won’t be played until later this week, as STAAR testing prevents early-week games.

When the playoffs resume on Thursday, Legacy will take on Dallas Sunset, with a tentative site of Grand Prairie’s Gopher Bowl at 6 p.m.

Friday’s games have Lake Ridge taking on Dallas Woodrow Wilson at Kincaid Stadium at 6:30 p.m. Mansfield will be on the road for a longer ride as they will play Odessa at Shotwell Stadium in Abilene at 5 p.m.

While in Abilene, Mansfield, 6A Region I, will be able to scout their next round opponent — given a win over Odessa — in either Keller or Midland, which plays earlier in the day at Shotwell.

Looking ahead for Legacy and Lake Ridge in 5A’s Region II, given victories, Lake Ridge could face the winner of Molina and Red Oak while Legacy would face the winner of Joshua and Dallas Adams.

Because of the layoff due to testing, Legacy’s Heather Wilson pushed for the Thursday game. The day-sooner game would help cut the lag time between games.

Wilson also said her squad was able to manage the conditions in addition to the opponent.

“I’m proud of their ability to stay focused and play well in the ridiculous, swirling winds,” she said.

Lake Ridge’s Duarte obviously figured out the winds as she scored all three of her goals in the second half.

“It was a phenomenal performance from her,” said Lake Ridge head coach Kim Wallace.

It wasn’t quite so easy for the Lady Tigers, but Rozear’s performance was the highlight of an otherwise sluggish start for Mansfield.

“We played poorly in comparison to how we had played the previous 10 games,” said Mansfield head coach George Velten, “but we were off for two weeks, so there was a lot of rust. Hopefully we will be more settled this week.”

After the area round, regional quarterfinal games will shift back to two per week.