The Fontainebleau girls soccer team is one of four Division I, District 6 teams that according to seeding position, were expected to make the postseason quarterfinals.
The Bulldogs took care of their end of the bargain Tuesday evening in a regional playoff against Acadiana at the Fontainebleau Dawg Pound in Mandeville.
Seventh-seeded Fontainebleau advanced to the quarterfinals with a 1-0 win over 10th-seeded Acadiana. The Bulldogs will face the winner of the St. Scholastica-East Ascension match, which is scheduled for Wednesday at the SSA Athletic Complex north of Covington.
Tuesday’s win over Acadiana was Fontainebleau’s third of the season over the Rams, after beating them in nondistrict play earlier this year.
Fontainebleau’s victory was far from easy, though. Acadiana employed a tight and tough defense on the Bulldogs, and often forced Fontainebleau’s speedy forwards toward the sideline.
The match was decided in the 71st minute when senior Amber Wilberg looped a shot to the right side of the box from about 25 yards out. The score followed a flurry of activity in the Acadiana box after Fontainebleau had a corner kick and another shot on goal in the previous seconds.
“We all have got to just focus on the next opponent first,” Wilberg said. “Both teams were really competitive tonight. We just willed a way to win.”
The first half of the Fontainebleau-Acadiana match was a lesson in feeling out each squad’s strengths and weaknesses. Neither made more than one clean attack on goal, and long lobs into the opposing defenses were the norm. The first half ended with a low shot count. The Bulldogs outshot the Rams 3-1 in the first half.
The Bulldogs’ best chance before halftime came in the 27th minute, when Bailey Tadlock knocked a header to the Acadiana goal. That close-range shot deflected off the right post, however, which kept the match scoreless. No other shot was hit within decent distance.
The second half started much like the first, with both looking for holes in the opposing defense. Fontainebleau got a good look on goal in the 57th minute, but it was wide of mark. Acadiana took the rebound, and Monique Hundley drove the center of the Bulldogs’ box. Her push to the far right post was just wide, however, and the match went into 59th minute scoreless. Hundley shot again in the 61st minute, but her shot was stopped by FHS goalie Bailey Scott.
Fontainebleau (15-5-4) outshot Acadiana (17-7-3) by an 11-6 margin in the match.
“The girls were challenged today, but they found a way to win,” Fontainebleau coach Carly Hotard said. “Wilberg has a tremendous foot, and she put it to good use (Tuesday, for sure. I was happy with our ability to keep pushing offensively, given that their defense played as well as it did.”
Acadiana coach John Carriere said the third match between the Rams and Bulldogs was by far the most competitive, even though it still resulted in a loss.
“We are more of an attack-oriented team,” Carriere said. “We just couldn’t do that tonight against this team. We prepared to play over the top. It just didn’t happen.”