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The Matrix

Maryville’s Hendrix delivers gem in scoreless draw with GPS
Lady Rebel senior Dee Fritz speeds with the ball across the halfline on Wednesday. Photos by Wallace Bowden

By Stefan Cooper
Blount Press Row

Playing back to back days, against back to back quality opponents, a goalkeeper who can turn it on like “The Matrix” in front of her net to keep her scoresheet clean can really be helpful.

Allie Hendrix

Allie Hendrix

Allie Hendrix paired a couple of acrobatic saves with a solid performance all around, and Maryville battled Division II defending state champion Girls Preparatory School to a scoreless draw Wednesday evening at John Sevier.

The match concludes the regular season for the Lady Rebels (12-4-1), whose six seniors — Carolyn Hobbs, Emma Bishop, Dee Fritz, Reagan Newman, Lizzie Fry, Rachel Broyles — enter postseason a combined 29-5-3 the last two years.

Maryville hosts West in a District 4 tournament quarterfinal on Saturday at 11 a.m.

Hendrix, a junior, saved six shots to get the shutout, two of them from point-blank range. The second, a diving stop to her left two minutes before the half, was as good as it gets.

Hendrix credited the defense in front her for much of Wednesday’s shutout. Newman, Fry, and juniors Abbie Anderson and Emery Spears distinguished themselves at the back. Hobbs worked back relentlessly from midfield to help Maryville transition and get forward. A dipsy-do move over the ball by the senior playmaker late in the half sparked a Lady Rebel surge.

“I think after last night (in a loss at Chattanooga Christian), we really wanted to improve the way we played,” Hendrix said.

Carolyn Hobbs cuts the ball around the GPS defense.

Carolyn Hobbs cuts the ball upfield.

Normally, Hendrix rotates in goal with Broyles.

“She (Hendrix) had the hot hand at the half, and I told Allie she had it tonight,” Maryville coach Bill Stooksbury said. “We knew (the Bruisers) were going to come up here and give us their best effort.”

The Maryville offense had equal difficulty finding throughways in the GPS defense. Freshman Abbey Kolarik and Fritz, the Lady Rebels’ top scorer this season with 12 goals and a pair of assists, both got in close for chances. Hobbs and freshman midfielder Grace Oliver were right on for much of the match with their service.

At match end, the Lady Rebels and Bruisers finished nearly even in shots on goal, Maryville with 11, GPS 7. The Lady Rebels got behind the Bruisers’ defense to force six corner kicks the first 40 minutes.

“A lot of us got a lot minutes last night,” Fritz said, “so we tried in the first five or 10 minutes to really attack.”

In the second half, Maryville’s match the day before began to tell, GPS getting to the end line to generate five corners.

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