Despite their long standing rivalry the Consol Tigers had no trouble landing a crushing blow to their next-door neighbors, the Bryan Vikings Friday night.
The A&M Consolidated high school girls soccer team pulled off a sweeping 4-0 victory over Bryan High School in the 2012 cross-town showdown game Friday night at Bryan’s home field.
As I sit in the stands at Bryan’s Merrill Green Stadium, my attention is draw towards the lack of Bryan fans gracing the crowd. Not only is there just one side of the gigantic stadium even open for seating, but also the crowd barely takes up 3 sections.
Two things were made clear to me from this game: that success relies heavily on support from your community, and that any sport in Texas that is not football, is not guaranteed the same level of coverage and attention.
The cross-town game between Bryan and College Station is the sporting event that is the most anticipated game of the regular season for every sport.
This rivalry between the two schools has “been pumped into them since they were ittie bittie,” said Coach Pettibone.
However, you wouldn’t know it from the crowd on Friday night. The fans and students who made it out to watch the game were overwhelmingly from College Station, further reinforcing city stereotypes.
Within the first 5 minutes, Consolidated had managed to score their first goal with a wild pass deflection.
Consol’s Carolina Orsi made an attempt to pass to a teammate in the mid field when the ball bounced of the head of Bryan defender Daisy Salazar to roll into the goal.
This wild shot would set the tone early on that would last for the rest of the match.
“Fortunately for us we played the combination balls very well in the middle,” said Consol’s Head Coach Stoney Pryor.
From that point on Bryan was forced to play defense and fight to catch up. With less than a quarter of the first half remaining, Consolidated had scored their second goal, heading into half time with a score of 2 to 0.
The first half of the match was a defined by Consolidated’s ability to execute great ball control, strong communication and cohesive teamwork. Making calls and issuing commands from the field to teammates, players could be heard in the stands.
For the second half, both teams started new goalies and Bryan adjusted their lineup some, moving Thompson and Meyer to midfield. Second half was a much more competitive game, however, Consolidated came out even stronger, scoring two more goals during the second half.
Although Bryan was unable to gain momentum during the game, senior goalkeeper #00 Ana Meyer did successfully block several attempts by Consolidated in the first half.
The only other constant for Bryan was the determination and hustle shown by junior midfielder and team captain, #20 Brittany Little, and junior defender #14 Jaime Thompson.
Despite trailing behind essentially the entire game, both Little and Thompson made several steals on the field, and were able to successfully deflect attempts by consol to score.
“ With all of our injuries we knew coming in it was going to be a tough game,” said Little, but “we came out and played hard.”
The Bryan Viking’s have had a very successful season so far, with a record of 10-2-1 (wins-loss-tie) coming into Friday’s game. Consolidated, with a 7-3-3 record, have also shown promise this season, foreshadowing a competitive match, however, due to injuries resulting in the loss of strong players, Bryan was never able to successfully take control of the game.
“Give me Consol when we have a healthy team and it’s a different ball game,” said Bryan head coach Amy Pettibone.
With tonight’s loss of right back defender Rose Barrentine to a left leg injury, Bryan has now suffered four injuries this season including team captain junior forward Kacy Shea.
“Some of our better players are injured…but that’s not an excuse. So we needed to come out as hard as we could and put a lot of effort into it,” said Little.
Bryan now holds a 10-3-1 record with Consol coming in at 8-3-3. Bryan will face Copperas Cove on Tuesday at 6pm with Consol facing Killeen Shoemaker.