published Saturday, October 29th, 2011

Pannell propels Baylor into final four



Halftime score: 2-0. Goals: Kelly Pannell 2, Chloe Brackett, McKenzie Thomas. Assists: Mary Ellen Williams, Sarah Hencke, Marci Carter, Peyton Thomas, Maggie Crumbliss. Shots: Baylor, 19-3. Saves: Kelsi Ray 9 (BA); Analiese Smith 2 (Bay). Records: Baylor 17-1; Brentwood Academy 7-7-3.

Baylor girls' soccer coach Jimmy Weekley noted that when senior Kelly Pannell comes to play, she's a great player.

Friday afternoon in the Division II-AA state quarterfinals, she showed up.

The Western Carolina commitment scored two first-half goals, and the top-ranked Lady Red Raiders advanced to next week's state tournament in Chattanooga with a 4-0 victory over Brentwood Academy. Baylor will face the winner between third-ranked Father Ryan and St. Benedict.

Pannell's goals came in the 25th and 39th minutes of play.

"Kelly got herself in a couple of great spots," Weekley said. "She's a dangerous player when she shows up to play."

Baylor fired off 19 shots but took a while to get its attack back in sync after a 10-day layoff between matches.

"I thought that overall we played pretty well," Weekley said. "Taking that layoff was hard and we didn't look sharp, but I thought that we had more dangerous opportunities this time than when we did the last time."

The Lady Red Raiders defeated the Lady Eagles 2-0 on Sept. 30 at Brentwood Academy. That was the halftime score Friday, and then Baylor tacked on goals by Chloe Brackett and McKenzie Thomas for the final margin.

Brentwood Academy finished the season 7-7-3.

"Baylor's a tough team; they're No. 1 for a reason," Brentwood Academy coach Warren Bezuidenhout said. "With their athletes, you can't make mistakes against them because they're so technically sound.

"We did a good job tonight and overall this season. The girls went through a coaching change and we relied heavily on our seniors, but the girls played their hearts out."

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