By SAM McGAW | Photos by MAGGIE POPE
It’s difficult to beat a good team three times.
Christ Presbyterian Academy’s soccer team found that out the hard way in Wednesday’s Division II-A semifinal against Battle Ground Academy.
Led by second-half goals from Zak Rollason and Robby Lape, the Wildcats pushed to the state finals with a 2-0 victory.
“In our last few games [against CPA], we’ve been knocking on the door with them, creating a more competitive environment,” BGA head coach Rob Mitchell said.
“We talked about five things we wanted to do in the second half, and I thought our guys were committed to doing that.”
BGA (13-4-2) will take on Lausanne (18-1) for the title at 4 p.m. Thursday at the Richard Siegel Soccer Complex in Murfreesboro.
CPA outshot the Wildcats 19-8. Only three of BGA’s shots were on goal.
“Soccer is a game of momentum,” CPA head coach Tom Gerlach said. “You can out-shoot a team, out-possess a team, out-everything a team and you can still lose the game.”
Rollason found the net first when he delivered a free kick to the upper left corner in the 48th minute.
“That was a gorgeous free kick,” Gerlach said. “It went over the wall, upper 90, against one of the best keepers in the state.”
Lape scored the second goal with a header off a cross from Nathan Evans in the 63rd minute.
“To be honest, I saw it at the last second,” Lape said. “(Evans) was in front of me and it came in and I just tried to flick it on goal. I saw him cut it back. It was a great effort by Nathan.”
BGA goalkeeper Jack Jewell made seven saves, including five in the first half. CPA struggled to find clear shots throughout the night.
“They stayed organized,” Mitchell said about his defense. “We made a couple of mistakes defensively one versus one. We gave them opportunities to turn, and we have to fix that (Thursday), because we’re going to face a very, very good team.”