Hilton Head High’s outstanding run through the SCHSL Class 4A girls soccer state playoffs came to an end Monday, falling 4-1 after going down to nine players in the Lower State final at region rival James Island
The Trojans struck first with a header off a corner kick to take an early lead, but Hilton Head fought right back to even the match. After a stellar defensive play by Charlotte Schmidt, Julia Kubec delivered a ball to Andrea Tapia who found senior co-captain Abbie Lainhart for the game-tying goal.
James Island quickly went back in front, retaking the lead on a dazzling outside shot from the wing to grab the 2-1 advantage. The game was a competitive and physical one all night long, and two Seahawks were sent off with red cards in the final 10 minutes of the first half. The Trojans then added another goal with the newfound two-man advantage, taking a 3-1 lead into halftime.
Hilton Head fought hard all the way to the final whistle, strengthening the midfield and denying James Island on multiple opportunities while creating nearly five scoring chances on the other end despite playing with just nine girls. But the Trojans delivered the dagger later in the second half, slipping in another into the back of the net to close out the 4-1 victory.
“Although we played 50 minutes with nine players, we remained focused on our game plan,” HHIHS head coach Kit Seelbach said. “We are a team and we went out as one.”
Hilton Head High finishes an excellent season with a record of 11-6.
By Wes Kerr