Coppell dominates Irving MacArthur but loses key player in first match of District 6-6A play


Mari Pletta

Coppell sophomore forward Michelle Pak defends against Irving MacArthur Friday night at Buddy Echols Field. The Cowgirls defeated the Cardinals, 5-1.

Anjali Krishna, Staff Writer

The score is 5-1 as the Cowgirls attempt to run down the clock with less than two minutes left in the match. A black jerseyed elbow meets a face and a girl falls to the ground. The referee’s arm goes up and with it, a red card for Coppell senior midfielder Montse Lomeli.

“[Montse] is a really big player on our team, and for the next two games, she’ll be gone, so it’ll impact us a lot,” Coppell sophomore centerback Bailey Peek said. “We’ll have to find someone and make up for her being gone with more energy.”

After the tempers from both sides settled, Coppell played out the remaining minute and 23 seconds to defeat Irving MacArthur on Friday night at Buddy Echols Field. Coppell won the battle but lost a key player for the next two matches in District 6-6A play.

“Montse is for sure our best midfielder, and we’re going to have to step up in the midfield,” Coppell senior defender Haley Roberson said. “Especially playing Hebron.”

After a slow start for Coppell, MacArthur scored within the first few minutes of the game.

“We didn’t quite start off as I’d hoped, but the girls responded well to that adversity and we were able to overcome and do a better job towards the end,” Coppell coach Ryan Dunlevy said. “It wasn’t the best game we’ve played all year but we learned some valuable lessons and came away with some things we can begin to work on and focus on as we prepare for a tough opponent on Tuesday [Hebron]. We’re going to sit down and look at all the things from tonight’s game and put together a game plan.”

After MacArthur’s first goal, the Cowgirls changed their gameplay and began to push themselves harder, allowing Coppell junior forward Jojo Alonzo to score the first of five goals and even out the score to 1-1.

“Our response to that goal in the first minute or two, was really crucial because we needed to respond as a team,” Alonzo said. “We needed to be compact, and we were overwhelmed. We couldn’t figure out what we were doing wrong, so we changed some things and it got us where we needed to be.”

After being reenergized by Alonzo’s goal, Coppell senior defender Haley Roberson scored, assisted by Coppell sophomore forward Michelle Pak, putting Coppell in the lead. Following Roberson’s goal, Coppell junior midfielder Maya Ozymy scored with the help of Alonzo, and Pak scored twice assisted from Roberson, once in the first half, once in the second.

Now 1-0 in district play, the Cowgirls faces Hebron in what they expect to be a tough match.

“We know Riley Weatherford and Olivia Hasser are their two best players, and they’re going to come out really strong, they’re fast and physical,” Roberson said. “We’re going to have find a way to match their intensity level and score.”

The Cowgirls play at Hebron on Tuesday night at 7:30 p.m. in Carrollton.

“They’re supposed to be a really good team, Dunlevy says they’re better than last year,” Alonzo said. “Now, after losing our player we’ve got to step it up, keep working. We’ve only got one more day to practice, but I think we just need to settle down, play our game, and we’ll be fine.”

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