ZACHARY — On a cold night, Live Oak High continued its scorching play.
Senior Maddy Harrouch scored two goals, fellow senior Alicia Carlos added another, and the Lady Eagles did enough defensively to hold off host Zachary for a 3-1 victory Tuesday.
Live Oak (6-2) has now won five straight games after dropping two of its first three to start the season. The Lady Eagles have outscored their last five opponents 23-2 after getting outscored 6-12 in their first three games.
Live Oak’s victory snapped a two-game winning streak for the Lady Broncos (6-4), who have lost four of six after winning their first four to start the season.
For Live Oak coach Kraig Zeller, it was fulfilling to see his squad finally “buying in.”
“We’re starting to buy into the system,” Zeller said. “Early on in the first few games, I think we were a little bit out of shape. But now, the kids are buying in and doing really well.”
Carlos broke the game open in the 9th minute of action, hitting the upper left corner of the goal from 20 yards out off an assist from freshman Kylie Zeller.
Harrouch doubled the Lady Eagles’ advantage 20 minutes later, finding the net from about 25 yards out for a 2-0 lead they’d take into halftime.
That lead was sliced in half shortly after the break.
A scrum in front of Live Oak’s goal ensued less than 30 seconds into the second half, resulting in an open net for Zachary’s Kirsten Miller, who tapped the ball in to make it a 2-1 game.
But that was as close as the Lady Broncos would get — Harrouch’s second goal with 18 minutes remaining all but sealed the Live Oak’s sixth victory in eight games this season.
The Lady Eagles maintained possession for most of Tuesday’s game, finishing with 14 shots (seven on goal) against eight shots (seven on goal) for Zachary.
Between the net, Live Oak’s Kylie Stringer racked up six saves during the contest, while Zachary’s Alexia Conachen tallied three.
“Defense wins championships,” Coach Zeller said. “If we can play out of our defensive third and play our flanks, we’re a very strong team. Most of our game is worked through the middle. If we can use our flanks with our speed on the outside, we do quite well.
“I’m starting to feel like, from top to bottom, we’ve been doing pretty well.”
The Lady Eagles return play when they face St. Frederick in tournament action at Ouachita Parish High School this weekend.