Tigers blank Community, await Summit for 11A-AA title

Friday, May 11, 2012
Marshall County's Brad Pippen (8) makes a run at the Community goal. Pippen would score one of the five Tigers' goals in the 5-0 blanking over the Vikings in the semifinals of the District 11A-AA Tournament Tuesday night in Chapel Hill. Photos by Anthony S. Puca

The third-seeded Marshall County Tigers posted their second consecutive 5-0 shutout, blanking second seeded Community Tuesday on the pitch at Forrest in the semifinals of the District 11A-AA Soccer Tournament.

"We expected to come in here and do this," said MCHS head coach Lisa Raffo. "We practiced really hard and practice pays off. The Community team played really well this season, so our hard work paid off in beating a good team."

With the win, the Tigers clinched a berth in the Region Tournament for the third year in a row and will take on fourth seeded Summit in the finals Thursday night at 5 p.m. in Chapel Hill.

Tiger senior Andres Acosta (14) attacks the Viking goal, matching leaps with Community goalie Jesse Cooper. Acosta would score twice and assist on two other MCHS goals in the 5-0 win.

Summit earned a berth in the finals as they pulled off a major upset, beating the top seeded and defending champions Page 3-2 in game one Tuesday.

"Summit is really surprising" said Raffo. "I was kind of shocked about that, but it doesn't matter who we play. But, we'll take Summit. That works for us."

The Tigers got two first half goals, breaking the scoreless game at the 8:47 mark of the half on a goal by Luis Zarate.

Marshall County took a 2-0 lead on a scoring kick by Brad Pippen at the 13:33 mark and that was the way the first half ended.

Early in the second half, the Tigers made it a three-zip match when Andres Acosta drilled a shot past Community keeper Jesse Cooper.

Midway through the final half, Acosta struck again, making it 4-0, and with .46 remaining in the contest, O'Shay Foreman put the icing on the cake with the Tigers' fifth goal of the game.

MCHS goalkeeper Jonathan Salinas stopped all 14 Viking shots in the contest and Acosta had two assists to go along with his two goals and Ivan Leyva also had an assist in the match.

Asked how she would prepare her team for the championship tilt, Raffo said, "We are going to put in a lot of physical work and some mental work tomorrow, just assess the game we played today and work from there."