Senior Rebecca Johnston is used to being a champion. She expects to be again.
On Friday evening, she played a big part in pushing the Hilton Head Island High School girls soccer team closer to its fifth straight title, scoring two goals to lead the Seahawks to a 3-0 win over visiting North Myrtle Beach in the Class-3A playoffs.
"I think it's definitely the goal every year," Johnston said. "I'm not really worried. I'm expecting a state championship, and I think we can do it."
Johnston broke the ice 12 minutes into the first half, putting the ball into the net after a scramble in the box. Later in the half, her second effort on goal put Hilton Head High up two and out of reach of the Chiefs.
Those two finishes, and a third by Abby Gilleland with just two minutes to go in the game, were not entirely representative of a game that the Seahawks dominated start to finish. In truth, it could have been six or seven, were it not for some shots straight at the opposing goalkeeper.
"We've just got to work on our finishing," Hilton Head High coach Ernie Suozzi said. "That's OK. Sometimes you have those days."
Suozzi said the biggest positive on the night was the team's ball movement, a strength throughout the season. The Seahawks spent most of the game in North Myrtle Beach's half, applying constant pressure and keeping any opposing attacks at bay. In a way, it was reminiscent of the last four champions, despite the constant roster turnover that has occurred over half a decade of dominance.
Hilton Head High will face either Brookland-Cayce or Myrtle Beach at home Monday in the Lower State final.