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Injured Vikes head to soccer playoffs

Steve Yingling

Injuries may affect South Tahoe High’s stay in the Nevada 4A girls soccer playoffs, which begin today. The defending Northern Nevada zone champions may be without leading scorer Faye Clapp when they travel to Reed High for a 5 p.m. first-round matchup in Sparks.

Clapp strained an ankle at the outset of the Vikings’ regular season-ending match with Fallon last Tuesday. The senior overcame the pain to score the Vikings’ two goals in a 2-2 tie with the Greenwave.

In addition to Clapp’s questionable status, the Vikings won’t have defender and inspirational leader Sara Corey, who injured her knee during practice Friday.

“If I can, I’ll be out there,” Clapp said. “My team is counting me in, and I think I’m the only one having doubts about my ankle. They’re telling me, ‘You’re playing, you have no choice.'”

Clapp originally injured the ankle during the previous basketball season. She doesn’t want to further damage the ankle, thus jeopardizing her collegiate career.

“The coach at UCLA has recruited me, and I have to work really hard to make the team. I have to try out and I don’t want to rehurt it to the point that I can’t play in college,” Clapp said.

If Clapp doesn’t play, the precedent doesn’t favor the Vikings. Clapp missed three games during the regular season, and the Vikings lost all three.

“We’re not feeling like it is an impossible situation. We know that by the way we played the other teams,” said Viking coach Jerry Foster. “Christie Higman and Robyn Linder can both score, and Jenn Perasso was our leading scorer for the first three games.”

Reed, which won Division I, rallied from a two-goal halftime deficit to defeat South Tahoe 5-3 on Sept. 2 in South Lake Tahoe.

“We were not ready for the two (speedy) girls they inserted. They try to get it down the field quickly and get some shots off. It’s a kick-and-run offense,” Foster said.

Added Clapp, “We definitely have the potential to beat Reed. Hopefully each player plays to their highest potential and we’ll come together and beat them.”

Inconsistency sums up South Tahoe’s 6-8-4 season.

“Other teams respect us, and on any given day we can definitely beat anyone. But a lot of it depends on how we play … which team shows up,” Foster said. “On a given day we can score 10 goals.”

Perhaps the playoffs will bring out the best in the Vikings, who have routinely played to the level of their opposition.

“It’s hard to say with this team. We have a lot of inexperienced players. Our team is really inconsistent … we play great games against tough teams and lose against the easiest team,” Clapp said.


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