MCHS soccer gives up two-goal lead
The roller coaster of growing pains and gains continues for the Moffat County High School soccer team.
After defeating Glenwood Springs for the first time in five years on Saturday, the Bulldogs, who led 3-1 and 4-2 in the second half, gave up three unanswered goals to Palisade Thursday to fall, 5-4, in the second extra period.
“It takes a long time to go from a team that merely hopes to keep it close to a team that starts winning,” coach Mick Havrilla said. “Each game this team is progressing to be a winning program and from today we can see we are still learning.”
In the Bulldog’s last four games they have either been tied or ahead at halftime, yet their record is 1-3 in those games. All of those losses have been by one goal.
“At this level, every one-goal game could go either way,” Havrilla said. “Were learning more of what it takes each game, the ‘w’s will come.”
After more than 17 minutes in the second half, senior C.J. Brown put a shot past the Palisade keeper to put the Bulldogs up 4-2. From then on the Bulldogs would miss three open-goal shots and Palisade would capitalize on its chances at the goal.
“This was a game that we needed,” Palisade coach Drake Jandreau said. “This is a team that has lost two seniors to broken legs this year and had lost its first three league games. Normally scoring three goals in this league is enough, but today it didn’t work out that way.”
After scoring in the 26th minute to get within one goal of the Bulldogs, Palisade senior Curtis Kline was taken down in the goalie box in the 38th minute. He missed the penalty kick over the goal and Bulldogs fans and players took a breath of relief.
“I think we thought we had it after the missed P.K.” senior Mike Cammer said.
“We just had to play D the rest of the game and we had it, but we lost our heads and focus.”
In the 44th minute – four minutes of extra play Palisade made the Bulldogs pay for their inability to put a game away and tied the game up. Twenty-two seconds later the whistle blew for the end of regulation.
“We fell apart from our patience game,” Havrilla said. “We’ve learned to find the balance between tense and loose, now we need to find the balance between patience and aggressiveness.”
After a scoreless first overtime in which neither team had a shot on goal, the Bulldogs reached new territory as a team.
“This is the first double-overtime game I think we’ve played in during my four years,” senior goalie Brandon Duarte said.
“This is also maybe one of the most disappointing gamesI;ve played as well.”
Five minutes into the second overtime, the right forward for Palisade made a cross into a goalie box that was crowded with more maroon jerseys than white. Kline made up for his missed penalty kick by lofting the ball over an oncoming Duarte into the net for the golden goal.
“That was Curtis’ second three-goal game of the season,” Jandreau said.
“He has really carried the team offensively.”
After the game the Bulldogs were struggling to figure where their 4-2 lead went.
“It’s hard to say what happened, I just don’t think we had our heads in it today,” Cammer said. “It could have been all the homecoming stuff or just that we knew that they didn’t have a win in league and the game should be easy.”
Havrilla said that, at this point in the season, nothing could be called a setback for the team since they have been playing so much better this season.
“These players will be over this and we’ll know what it takes next time,” he said. “It is my job to help them learn from this and to keep getting stronger.”
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