Late goals sink Lady Buffs soccer team
By BRETT MARSHALL
By BRETT MARSHALL
If the Garden City Lady Buffaloes' soccer team hopes to dethrone the Hays High Lady Indians and win the 2014 Western Athletic Conference, they'll have to do on May 5 what the Lady Indians did on Monday — win on the road.
The Lady Buffs couldn't overcome two late goals by the Lady Indians at Buffalo Stadium, including an own goal, resulting in a tough-to-handle 3-1 setback to their WAC rival.
It was a struggle the whole game for the Lady Buffs to find their offensive rhythm, and they really never got in sync, pelting Hays goalkeeper with 16 shots, but few of any high quality.
At least, that's the way GCHS head coach Joaquin Padilla saw it in a post-game interview.
"We played well for much of the game, especially on the defensive side, but we didn't get the quality shots that we needed," Padilla said. "Some of the direct kicks didn't go where they needed, and I think in some cases we wanted to score from too far away."
After being blanked for the first 67 minutes by a smothering Hays defense, the Lady Buffs got its lone goal in unusual fashion when Evelyn Rodriguez booted the ball high in the air with a trailing wind just in front of the Hays goal. Lady Indians' goalkeeper, Brittany Dinkel, tried to hit the ball with her left hand, but instead the ball slipped over her and trickled into the goal to tie the score at one.
Hays had grabbed a 1-0 lead in the 28th minute when Talyn Kleweno scored an unassisted goal when she stole a pass and then shot from inside the left portion of the goal box and a high arcing kick just went over the outstretched arms of Garden City goalkeeper Ashlee Richman.
That lead stood up for another 40 minutes before Rodriguez' tying goal, and at the time, momentum seemed to have swung to the Lady Buffs.
Instead, Hays got the own goal when a kick from the left side appeared to have hit a Garden City defender and the ball caromed into the goal past Richman with 3:30 remaining in the game.
"They got the shots and scored, and we had shots and didnt' score," Padilla said.
Two late shots by the Lady Buffs inside the goal box hit the goal post that would have tied the score. Hays got one of the deflections, passed the ball down the field and eventually Alexa Brull got a breakaway shot from the left side at about the 15-yard line and it went over Richman to seal the victory.
"Hays is a good team, but I thought we played as well as they did," Padilla said. "Maybe we get anxious with our shots, I'm not sure. We need to try and get somebody else in front of the goal that is more energetic on the offensive end."
The victory kept Hays unbeaten in WAC, where the Lady Indians are now 4-0 and stand 7-2 overall. Three of those WAC wins have come on the road, and that is something that was not lost on Padilla.
"They're in the driver's seat," Padilla said of Hays. "We'll have to go there and win if we want any chance of winning the WAC."
The loss dropped the Lady Buffs to 1-1 in the WAC and 4-3 overall. They get little rest as Great Bend comes to town today for a 5:30 p.m. WAC battle at Buffalo Stadium.
Hays High 1 2 -- 3
Garden City 0 1 -- 1
HHS--Talyn Kleweno, unassisted, 28th minute.
GC--Evelyn Rodriguez, unassisted, 68th minute.
HHS--Own goal, deflection, 76th minute.
HHS--Alexa Brull, unassisted, 78th minute.
Shots--Hays High 13, Garden City 16. Saves--Hays High (Brittany Dinkel 5), Garden City (Ashlee Richman 8). Yellow Card--Hays High (Coach Hernandez).