Kelley scores 5 goals to lead C’burg past Lincoln
LINCOLN—It’s not common to see a soccer player score a hat trick in a game. It’s even less common to see three players score hat tricks in a single game, but that’s what happened Friday night at Keith Howard Memorial Stadium where Childersburg defeated Lincoln 8-3.

Childersburg’s Mac Kelley scored five goals, her younger sister Warnesha Kelley scored three goals, and Lincoln’s Leia Brown scored three goals.

“It was pretty impressive, Mac Kelley,” Lincoln head coach Rob Austin said. “I’d heard about her. We played them earlier this year and apparently, she hadn’t joined the team yet. We thought we had a game plan where we were going to put one of our fastest defensive players [Cantasia Morris] and just man-up on her, just cover her all over the field. It was really an impressive showing on her part and their whole team in general. They look like they’ve really gotten better since the last time we played them.”

Despite the loss, Austin remained optimistic about his team.

“All in all, I’m still pleased with my girls’ performance,” he said. “They tried to fight back and really never gave up. I try to always take the positives. I thought Leia—she’s been kind of banged up here—and I thought she’s really done great to try to help the team out. We’ll take a break over spring break, refuel and be ready to go.”

Kelley didn’t waste any time getting the scoring started. At 3:19 into the game, she scored a goal. Then at 5:16, she made a perfect cross to her sister for a wide-open goal to give Childersburg a 2-0 lead.

“She got us started real quick,” Childersburg head coach Cory Ausderau said. “She’s real aggressive, and then when she needs to drop back on defense and save us back there. She does what she needs to do to help the team. She passes the ball all around once we get a good lead and she’s a great teammate.”

Brown did her part to bring Lincoln back into the game, scoring a goal at 9:33 when she was able to receive a goal kick from Childersburg and blast a kick into the goal.

But Kelley managed to get three more goals before halftime to give her team a commanding lead. At 24:52, she received a strong Childersburg goal kick and was able to find a crease in the Lincoln defense for a goal. At 27:14, she scored another goal, with Lincoln goalkeeper Kayla Ramsey getting a hand on it, but the shot being powerful enough to still make it into the net of the goal. At 31:23, Kelley scored her fourth goal of the game when she traveled nearly the entire distance of the field for a goal to give Childersburg a 5-1 lead.

When asked about her role for Childersburg, Kelley responded, “I try to lead the team as much as possible. I try to help better them skill-wise. First, get the goals and then teach them during the game, just help them out as much as possible.”

Once again, Brown was able to answer to try and get Lincoln back into the contest. She scored a goal at 34:43, kicking the ball into the far left corner of the net to cut the lead to 5-2, which is where the score stood at halftime.

Brown scored the first goal of the second half at 49:03, once again finding the far left corner of the net to make the score 5-3.

“My team played hard,” Brown said. “Everybody gave their best effort, because we knew we had a tough game ahead. I just did everything I could possibly do to give us a chance and scoring three goals helped that.”

Kelley scored her fifth goal of the game at 54:32 with a long-range kick that was perfectly placed just beyond the reach of Ramsey.

Warnesha Kelley added a goal not long after at the 56:02 mark from the right corner of the penalty box and into the net to give Childersburg a 7-3 lead.

At 64:52, Lincoln was called for a handball penalty and Childersburg received a penalty kick. Warnesha Kelley took the shot and didn’t disappoint, as the shot hit the top right crossbar and made it into the net for a goal.

“It’s very interesting playing soccer with these girls this year,” Warnesha Kelley said. “I thought everyone played hard going into spring break. That’s a great way to get a good win—passes were good, it’s just a lot of team effort that you’ve got to put into it. Everyone’s got to work together. We’re a family. We’re all sisters.”

Despite the loss, Brown managed to attain yet another hat trick for Lincoln.

“It’s becoming pretty common for me, but that’s a pretty impressive feat and it’s hard to do,” Austin said. “We’re grateful to have her, because she’s just been a machine out there getting goals for us. She’s a great leader on the team. All the girls look up to her and are really able to learn a lot soccer-wise just from watching her practice and her out there kind of coaching them up too. So, it’s been good to have her.”
© 2013