Valdosta Daily Times

Local Sports

April 2, 2014

Forward thinking

In new position, Bausch leads Vikettes past Trojans

VALDOSTA — Injuries to Lowndes' starting lineup pushed senior Addie Bausch into the forward position for the first time in her high school soccer career on Tuesday night, her performance ensured it would not be the last time in her new gig.

Bausch scored the first four goals of her Lowndes High career to lead the Vikettes to their 10th win of the season, defeating the Coffee Trojans 9-0.

"On my travel team I play forward a bit so I knew what I was doing, but I was excited to get the chance to actually come up and score my senior year," said Bausch.

It didn't take long for Bausch to get accustomed to her new role, the Valdosta State signee scored the first goal of the game midway through the first half before adding a second 10 minutes later to give Lowndes a 2-0 lead after a half of play.

"[Bausch] let us know this is her first game at forward in four years, but she's just so solid on defense. She's smart and she keeps us sound back there, so it's really hard to let her forward," said Lowndes coach Chris Willis. "But boy when she got up there she sure let it loose, didn't she?"

Despite Bausch's absence in her usual defensive spot, the Vikettes still smothered the Trojans throughout the night; Lowndes' defense limited Coffee to a single shot on goal.

"I realized we have been working on our defense and we've had some injuries so I knew I had to make some preparations for the future," said Willis. "I knew we had some people we had to move in, so I gave some new people in the back some responsibility and let Addie go up there.

"They did a great job. We've got some good leadership up there with the forwards, and especially the back. Haylee Gordon did a great job controlling it, when Addie left Haylee had to patrol the back."

Bausch and Gordon have worked together on and off the field for years and the fruits of their labor were evident tonight.

After providing solid defense throughout the first half, Gordon put the ball in the goal three and a half minutes into the second half before Bausch continued to add to her tremendous night. A goal with 26:37 remaining in the game gave Bausch a hat-trick in her first ever start at forward, but she wasn't done yet, Bausch slid into a cross-goal pass from Darby Jones for her fourth and final goal of the night.

"It kind of felt amazing," said Bausch of her career night. "It was a good night."

Just four minutes after Bausch's fourth goal of the night, Gordon's second put the game out of reach, extending the Vikettes' lead to 6-0.

Laura Tunison added two goals in the final eight minutes, one with 30 seconds remaining, and Elizabeth Lott chipped in one of her own as Lowndes moved to 10-2 with the win.

In the second game of the evening, the (10-2-1) Lowndes boys earned a gritty 2-0 win against Coffee (5-6-2).

Physical play and missed opportunities were abundant in a matchup between the Region 1-AAAAAA leaders as both teams battled to make a statement at Martin Stadium.

"Yes," said Lowndes coach Ryan Breit when asked if Tuesday's game represented a statement win for his team. "Coffee came in 3-0 in the region, we came in 3-0 in the region, this was the tiebreaker for first place."

With both teams scoreless despite some solid early looks at the goal from both sides, Lowndes' had a chance to take the early lead on a penally kick awarded after a Coffee defender got a little too physical in the box.

Just a few yards separated Chris Wilmot from the net and the 1-0 lead, but he got underneath the ball, launching it over the entire goal, keeping the game tied at 0, however Christian Houglin redeemed Wilmot less than a minute later by putting a ball into the back of the net to give Lowndes an early lead.

A 1-0 lead is hardly insurmountable, but the way the Vikings have played in region this year, it may have well been.

"They know the importance of keeping a shutout and they work so hard it," said Breit. "It's something we do everyday in practice, its something we work on in games, and they make it difficult for teams to score on us. We have a defense that is a tenacious workhorse on the field.

Lowndes had yet to allow a goal in three region games coming into Tuesday's contest and they were able to keep the streak alive at Martin Stadium; combined with a Christian Castanon goal, the Vikings escaped with a 2-0 win and in sole possession of first place in Region 1-AAAAAA.

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