Goals remain elusive for New Richmond girls soccer teamIn every game that the New Richmond girls soccer team has scored more than one goal, the Tigers have won.
By: Dave Newman, New Richmond News
In every game that the New Richmond girls soccer team has scored more than one goal, the Tigers have won.
Unfortunately, that was in two of their first 10 games this season. The Tigers earned their second win of the season last Tuesday when they defeated Amery 2-1. The Tigers’ other victory, against another of the top teams in the Middle Border Conference, was a 2-1 decision over Superior.
The Tigers have demonstrated top quality defense in their first seven Middle Border Conference games. The Tigers have given up one goal in each of those seven games. Conversely, the Tigers have scored six goals in those seven conference games.
Tiger coach Steve Tesar said the girls are putting the ball in good situations to score, they simply need to learn how to finish the chances. He used last Thursday’s 1-0 loss against Barron as an example. The Tigers lost, despite outshooting Barron 25-1, according to New Richmond statistics.
“I thought the girls played their best game. I saw a lot of promising stuff,” Tesar said of the loss to Barron.
Tesar conceded that there are issues once the Tigers get the ball into the offensive zone. The forwards are still trying to develop timing. At points they appear to struggle seeing when passes are going to be made by teammates. Many of the Tigers’ shots are being blocked by defenders well before they reach the goalkeeper.
The Tigers don’t have a game this week until Thursday, when they play at Spooner. Tesar said the practices in the first three days of the week will be concentrating on finishing drills and working on timing in the offensive zone.
Several of the Tigers’ goals this season have been scored off long runs down the field. That’s how they produced their first goal against Amery. The Tigers weren’t at their sharpest in the first 15 minutes of the game, but that changed when the Tigers scored their first goal. Kaycie Anderson received a pass from Hannah Hagen and Anderson was able to split a pair of Amery defenders. As she raced downfield the Amery keeper came out to challenge her. Anderson deked her way around the sprawling goalie, then dribbled right to the goal line, touching the ball into the net.
Tesar said Anderson was still feeling badly about a shot that hit the goalpost against Somerset and she wasn’t going to miss the target this time around.
The goal energized the Tigers and that strong play carried well into the second half. Midway through the second half, the Tigers hit the wall. Amery had a burst of about 10 minutes when the Warriors put heavy pressure on the Tigers. That culminated with the tying goal, which was scored with less than nine minutes left in regulation.
Amery must have used all its energy on the comeback, because the Tigers immediately went back on the attack. Within three minutes the Tigers had regained the lead. Amery didn’t pressure the Tigers on a throw-in, making it easy for Tina Montpetit to get the ball to Sydney Simpson. Simpson lofted a pass toward the front of the net, where it struck an Amery player. The ball ricocheted to Tiger Heather Halvorsen, who one-timed a shot into the goal, just under the crossbar.
On Thursday Amery delivered Hayward’s first MBC defeat, beating the Hurricanes 3-0.
The Tigers dropped to 0-3 in non-conference games when they lost 4-1 at Rice Lake on Friday.
Anderson scored the only Tiger goal on another play that covered most of the field. Anderson received a lead pass from Montpetit and she was off to the races. She got deep into the Rice Lake zone, firing a shot from 20 yards out that snuck in just inside the goalpost.
The Tigers’ game at Spooner on Thursday will end the first round of MBC play. The Tigers start the second half of their MBC schedule next Tuesday when they play at Osceola.