CLAREMORE — It's hard to get a shot past Claremore sophomore goalkeeper Brylee Brasher.
Brasher proved once again that she's one of the top goalkeepers in the state with her MVP-performance in the Class 5A State Quarterfinals Friday night at Lantow Field.
Brasher put the clamps on the high-scoring Cascia Hall offense, and secured the Lady Zebras a berth in the Final Four.
Behind their defensive catalyst — Brasher — the No. 4-ranked Lady Zebras shutout No. 10 Cascia Hall, 3-0 and improved to 12-1 on the season.
More importantly, the Lady Zebras kept their quest toward a historic Class 5A State Championship alive and now await the winner of top-ranked Edmond Deer Creek and Oklahoma City Heritage Hall in the state semifinals later this week.
Cascia Hall's offense came into the match-up, holding a 30-3 margin over its opponents. They defeated Pryor, 4-0 in the first-round of the playoffs to set up the showdown with the Lady Zebras.
What had high hopes of being a jugger-naut battle between two traditionally-rich girls soccer programs, turned into an early momentum-shifting edge for the Lady Zebras.
Claremore's electrifying offense — fresh off a 10-0 romp of Tahlequah in the first-round — got on the board first with Chandler Payne launching a 30-yard pass toward the penalty box, in which freshman forward Olivia Maulsby trapped with her left foot and then slipped the shot past the diving Cascia Hall goalie in the right corner of the net for the 1-0 lead.
Cascia Hall, though, had several opportunities to counter midway through the first half, including a couple of shots taken by former Lady Zebra forward Carlie Cook, but Brasher never flinched with her dominating presence in the net.
Later on, Claremore's Taylor Williams got a midfield pass from senior Katelin Teter, moved to her left and back to her right to fight through the Cascia Hall defense before scoring the unassisted goal that put the Lady Zebras up 2-0 at halftime.