The Ponte Vedra girls’ soccer team posted an 8-0 mercy win over visiting Parker High School Friday to advance to the Class 3A regional semi-finals. It was the team’s fourth consecutive win and fourth straight shutout. It was the ninth shutout of the season for Shark goalkeeper Hannah Suder
Ponte Vedra took complete control of the game almost immediately. Tatum Taucher’s header on a Piper Dotsikas pass six minutes in just missed, but it was one of the few chances on which the Sharks failed to convert all evening and was an indication of what was to come. It was also the first of several setups the junior, Dotsikas, would make.
The Sharks took an early lead at the 27-minute mark when Dotsikas sent a perfect cross to Julia Worman stationed in front of the visitor’ goal and Worman’s shot found the back of the cage. Three minutes later Dotsikas set up Molly Miller to put the Sharks up 2-0. When Makayla Parkes’ feed to Caroline Lesher eluded the Parker keeper, a mercy win seemed possible. Reilly Tarbet’s goal then made it 4-0 Sharks.
Sophie Lesher bumped the lead to 5-0 five minutes before the first half ended setting the stage for a rare Shark mercy win.
Coach Silverberg gave most of his starters the rest of the night off but Ponte Vedra’s offense never really missed a beat. After Cassidy Bierwagen scored at the 45th minute mark, the Lesher sisters combined for the seventh goal – Sophie scored and Caroline got the assist.
Despite the fact the many of the Shark starters were resting on the sideline, the Shark defense remained stout. Parker managed just two shots on goal the entire game and neither was a challenge for Suder.
Lydia Merete’s blistering shot from 10 yards out was the Sharks’ eighth goal, ending the match and sending Ponte Vedra (10-5-6) to the regional semi-finals against the Stanton Blue Devils (12-6-3).
Ponte Vedra is playing their best soccer of the season; their defense has been superb – vintage Silverberg. In Silverberg, the Sharks have a coach whose playoff record is second to none. In Piper Dotsikas, a UCF commit, Ponte Vedra has a dominant player capable of controlling the game anywhere on the pitch.
With such evenly matched teams, the winner may, unfortunately, be decided by a penalty kick shootout.