RIPLEY – It was plenty hot for Saturday’s girls soccer match between the Ripley Vikings and Point Pleasant Knights in Death Valley. With the on-field temperature hovering around 108 degrees, head coach Chris Stout’s squad provided plenty of heat of their own.
The Vikings went up 4-0, before the game was called early in the second half due to heat concerns.
“Man, it was hot,” Stout said, “The ladies showed great perseverance in the heat. We came out a little scattered and flat, but we recovered to really find our game.”
Sophomore Mackenzie Gillispie got things going with a beautiful goal at the 29-minute mark of the first half to put Ripley ahead. Then, freshman Gracie Smith showed tremendous skill on a 35-yard chip shot goal over the keeper’s head to bring the score to 2-0.
The Viking defense remained strong in the heat, as sophomore keeper Taylor Kennedy and the rest of her defenders controlled Point’s attack.
In the second half, Sydni Cunningham broke through the Point defense to score at the 36 minute mark, followed by a nice combination from Gillispie to senior Megan Scarberry at the 33 minute mark for the fourth goal.
At that point, it was deemed too hot to continue and the game was called to give Ripley a 4-0 win.
Freshman Olivia Gandee added an assist, as did Gillispie.
PARKERSBURG SOUTH 5 – RIPLEY 0
The Vikings ran into a buzzsaw on Thursday night, as Parkersburg South gave Ripley its first loss of the season in a 5-0 win.
“We ran up against a tough team that was amped up for their home opener,” Stout said, “We didn’t match their intensity and that resulted in us playing their game all night instead of our own. It was a good lesson for us on the importance of coming out strong right from the first whistle.”
The Vikings didn’t find the back of the net on the night, while the Patriots peppered Kennedy with shots. She made five saves in the game.
Now 3-1 on the season, the Vikings return to action tonight at home against Spring Valley at 6:00 p.m.