Admitting his team is not a "scoring machine," Lawrence High girls soccer coach Chris Bay says the Lions will depend on defense to carry them through the state playoffs.
The Lions are scheduled to play at Washburn Rural at 6 p.m. Tuesday. The winner will play the Manhattan-Topeka West winner on Thursday in Manhattan.
"Usually the games we play are hard-fought defensive battles and we'll rely on that again going into the playoffs," Bay said.
The Lions enter regional play as the fifth seed at 6-9-1. Lawrence actually finished 6-7-1 but gained two extra losses because it was unable to make up games with Leavenworth and Manhattan. The technicality cost the Lions the second seed and a home game.
The Lions beat the Junior Blues 2-0 in overtime during the regular season. Washburn Rural has a 7-9 record.
"They have an excellent goal keeper," Bay said. "They're very defensive minded. Our key is to see if we can shut them out. We have enough scoring threats that we should be able to beat them."
Because of Friday's rainout at Leavenworth, the Lions haven't played since losing to Shawnee Mission East a week ago.
"The fact we didn't play on Friday hurt us on seedings, but it helped us get healthy," Bay said. "All year long we've been trying to hit our stride. I think we're there. We're getting some people healthy now."
Striker Stacy Copp is Lawrence's leading scorer in the Lions' balanced attack. Copp, midfielder Marjy Givens and sweeper Traci Meisenheimer have been nominated by Bay for the Northeast Kansas Soccer Conference Association team.
"We're a well-rounded team," Bay said. "We've had a lot of girls involved in the attack."