Sophomore Alexea Jones turned in the first hat trick of her career, and Oneida scored six quick goals in the second half of a lopsided win over Harriman on Thursday, moving to 2-0 in District 3-A play with a 9-0 win over the Blue Devils.
In what Oneida coach Phil Newport called a “pretty dominant win,” the Lady Indians controlled both the first and the second half. But the shots that weren’t finding the back of the net in the first half did so in the second half, as the game was called early due to TSSAA’s mercy rule.
“We applied some new stuff in the first which created more looks, we just weren’t very patient lining them up,” Newport said. “We had 26 shots in the first with three goals. In the second half, they did much better with placing them and the ball got put in better places for us to score.”
As dominant as the Lady Indians were in the first half, the goals came slowly. Jones and junior Savana Shepard each scored early to give the Lady Indians a 2-0 lead, then Caroline Keeton scored with just under 10 minutes to play before the intermission, helping Oneida build its lead to 3-0.
The next goal didn’t come until 10 minutes into the second half, when sophomore Kenlee Duncan scored. But then they came quickly.
Within three minutes of Duncan’s goal, Jones had scored two more. Then Aliyah Douglas aded a goal, and Oneida was up 7-0 with still 20 minutes to play.
Cleaning things up was Myia Dunlap, who tacked on two goals to build the 9-0 lead and force the early finish to the game.
“Harriman tried to contain things by closing up the middle and we just showed no discipline early,” Newport said. “As the game wore on, they started finding that second line.”
Dunlap scored both of her goals from her midfielder position, which Newport said was an area of the field his players began to exploit in the second half.
“Claire (Burress) didn’t receive much action but we played pretty much on their third of the field,” he said. “My kids are going to play harder. They are learning that.”
Newport credited Duncan for stepping in for the injured Laurel Blount, who suffered a broken wrist in the Lady Indians’ game against Scott High on Tuesday.
“I talked about standards — mine and ours — and I think we are getting on the same page,” Newport said of his team.
The Lady Indians will have a tough test against an always strong Anderson County team on Tuesday in Clinton.