Going up against one of the traditional powers in girls soccer, even as the defending state champions, is a tough enough task. Doing so at less than full capacity makes it nearly impossible.
Defending state AAA girls soccer champion Indian Land proved to be no match for Bishop England, losing, 3-0, in Saturday’s title match at Irmo High School. Bishop England claimed their 11 th championship since 2000, their first in Class AAA.
Indian Land finished at 19-4- 1. Coach Mark Bonda says his team faced adversity and could not overcome against a powerful opponent. The Warriors lost starting striker Breanna Bishop to a torn ACL in the first half.
“We had battled some injuries all week,” the coach said. “Our starter in the center-mid had the flu all week, and she was limited today. Losing Breanna Bishop to the ACL in the first half hurt us. We had some younger girls on the outside and it was difficult to get settled in.
“I don’t wanna take anything away from Bishop England, they’re a great side. We knew when we came here that we had to be 100 percent.”
Bishop England grabbed an early lead with a goal in the 15th minute off the foot of freshman Kayla Vroman. That score remained until the 51 st minute when senior Kessy Bradshaw beat Indian Land keeper Emma Thompson for a 2-0 advantage.
Bishop England’s final goal game in 75 th minute by sophomore Britton Blom.
“On film, they move very well and I think that was something we had trouble matching up with,” Bonda said. “There were some gaps and weaknesses that we had. They can pressure you the entire game. I was amazed at how their group was able to stay in for almost the entire game in this heat.”
Though disappointed with the way this season ended, Bonda says the graduating seniors have set the bar high for his program. The roster had eight seniors.
“I am proud of all the accomplishments this team has had,” the coach said. “We’re still a fairly young program. We’ve been in three Upper State championships and played in two state championships.