Lady Viking soccer team enjoys another great season

It was a tough ending for the Ripley girls soccer team with a loss to Parkersburg South in Class AAA sectional play, but success far, far and away fended off any disappointment for Steve Gandee’s second Lady Viking edition.

Ripley finished with an outstanding 16-3-3 record.

As a team, Ripley scored a school-record 101 goals. It was the most by any West Virginia Class AAA team in the 2018 campaign.

Defensively, Ripley gave up only 12 goals, which is second-best in school history. The goals conceded had six being scored from set pieces – three were direct free kicks and three were penalty kicks.

To illustrate just how difficult it was to score against Ripley, 14 opponents failed to do so. Ripley produced 14 shutouts, again second-best in the annals of Lady Viking soccer.

While Ripley didn’t compete in the Mountain State Athletic Conference this season, the schedule remained demanding.

“We beat Cabell Midland for the first time in 18 years,” said Gandee. “Our schedule included George Washington, Wheeling Park, Hurricane, Charleston Catholic and Winfield. We went 1-1-3 in those five games. Each of them made the State Tournament.”

Ripley’s team featured five seniors. Mackenzie Gillispie scored 22 goals and had 13 assists. Naudia Morrison had five goals and four assists. Cassidy Miller contributed three goals and an assist. Allison Knox had two assists. Taylor Kennedy, the team’s keeper, had 92 saves and also scored a goal.

Junior Olivia Gandee led the team in scoring with 30 goals and dished out 28 assists (both set single-season records in the program). Regan Carpenter punched in 12 goals and delivered nine assists. Gracie Smith scored four times and had two assists. Aynzil Parsons had three goals and an assist. Sydni Cunningham scored two goals and an assist. Olivia Broom contributed a goal and an assist.

Sophomore Aubree Flint scored 12 goals and had two assists. Grace Walsh scored a goal and two assists. Ashley Craigo and Laney Harper each had an assist. Craigo had two saves working the net.

Selah Stephens, a freshman, had four goals and two assists. Mia Casto, another ninth grader, had a goal. Kaitlyn Lawrence and Elizabeth Williams also played as freshmen.

Gandee and Gillispie each made Class AAA First Team All-State. Kennedy was Second Team All-State along with Smith. Carpenter received Honorable Mention.

Ripley had five All-Regional picks in Kennedy, Gillispie, Smith, Gandee and Carpenter. Miller gained Honorable Mention.