GEORGETOWN, Texas -- ESPN Rise FAB 50 No. 2 McKinney Boyd will return to the Class 5A girls state soccer final after beating San Antonio Johnson on Friday, 1-0.
The only goal of the game came off a penalty kick by Boyd senior forward Kelley Monogue -- she buried the ball in the right corner with the inside of her foot in the third minute of the game. The shot found its mark before the Johnson goalkeeper could move.
Monogue, a Texas A&M commit, was pulled down from behind in the box after she was able to get a step on the Johnson defense. Johnson head coach Kara Stracener said the move was a last-effort move by her defender to try and prevent a goal after she was beat.
“It was an unfortunate call … I think our girls were a bit shell-shocked,” Stracner said. “It was a last resort effort to prevent a score.”
That penalty kick was the first called against Johnson this year.
The early score led Boyd to play a prevent strategy for the remainder of the game, a move Boyd head coach Jimmie Lankford said got his team a little “off.”
“I think it hurt us. Getting up that early -- we relaxed a little to quick I think we said we’ve got this,” Lankford said.
Boyd dominated possession in the first half, finding success by moving through balls past Johnson’s defense, leading to a few failed tries on goal. Johnson came out in the second half ready to find an equalizer and gave the No. 2 team a run for its money.
“They came out on fire,” Lankford said. “Give them a great credit for their team. They’re a quality team. They turned up the notch and we didn’t. I think we relaxed a little bit and it hurt us.”
Boyd’s tackles and challenges were far from relaxed throughout the game, each coming at full force and with conviction. The Broncos' willingness to go in hard stopped multiple Johnson runs on the spot.
“I think our weight room paid off in the offseason,” Lankford said. “We’re strong and we managed to take a lot of our physicality and give it back.”
Johnson made its first trip to the state tournament this year in just it’s third season as a program. The Jaguars also won their first playoff game in program history in the bidistrict round of this season’s playoffs.
Boyd makes a return trip to the state finals to face another Metroplex team, Colleyville Heritage, which advanced past Houston Clear Lake, 1-0.
“[Heritage is] going to play very smart soccer in the back, keep kids back and really try to take advantage of your mistakes,” Lankford said before the tournament. “They’re a dangerous team. As Southlake, Marcus and them found out, you can’t overlook them.”