Early goals help Lady Cats fend off Bryant girls in first-place showdown

For more photos of this event by Rick Nation, go here

Grace Carmack (5), Ashton Inman (12) and Melinda Hernandez battle with a Conway player for possession of the ball. (Photo by Rick Nation)

CONWAY — With a chance to gain a share of the 6A-Central Conference championship, the Bryant Lady Hornets were denied as the Conway Lady Cats finished unbeaten to earn the title with a 3-2 win over Bryant on Monday night.

The Lady Hornets finished 12-2 in the league with both losses coming narrowly at the hands of Conway. Their match at Bryant earlier in the year went to a shootout after they battled to a 1-1 tie in regulation.

So, the Lady Cats will be the top seed for the 6A State Tournament, which they will host starting this Thursday.

Bryant will be a two seed. Both teams will have first-round byes. The Lady Hornets will open play on Friday at 4 p.m., against the winner of the Thursday game between five seed from the 6A-West Conference, Springdale Har-Ber and either Cabot or North Little Rock.

Alyssa Fason (Photo by Rick Nation)

“We started slow and nervous,” said Lady Hornets head coach Nicole Inman. “Conway got the first goal.”

Kailyn Pavatt had a hat trick for the Lady Cats. She scored that first goal at the 32:09 mark of the first half. Her second game at 14:46 and it was 2-0 at the intermission.

Less than nine minutes into the second half, Mary Catherine Selig scored off an assist from Abbey Inman on a corner kick.

Pavatt made it 3-1 with 15:15 left and it wasn’t until the final minute that Alyssa Fason added Bryant’s second goal off a penalty kick.

Bryant keeper Addison Funk saved eight shots.

Jillian Colclasure (Photo by Rick Nation)

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