Lady Jaguars blitz Bobcats
The Mill Valley High School girls soccer team had plenty of reasons to get out to a slow start Monday at Basehor-Linwood.
The Jaguars played on a sponge-like, small field with high grass; they had been off from practice for several days because of the weather; and some players might have been experiencing a prom hangover from the weekend.
"I thought the first half we played very slow," MVHS coach Arlan Vomhof said. "I told the girls I thought we were only at about 50 percent for part of the first half. Basehor was beating us to balls, so that was the main thing we needed to change in the second half."
Vomhof's halftime speech worked wonders. Mill Valley had a change of pace and a change in approach in the second half, which led to a 4-1 victory after playing to a 1-1 tie in the first half -- the lone goal scored by Kelly Donaghy.
In the first half, the Jags had tried to play the ball over the top and let their forwards chase it down. On the short field, that strategy wasn't working.
"I hate playing on this field," Vomhof said. "It's too small. It's too short. It's too narrow. So it's definitely an advantage for them and something that we usually take half the night to get used to."
The Jags started to get the ball to their wings in the second half and played from the outside in. They took the lead 2:49 into the second half when forward Jana Boss received a pass at midfield, dribbled in and shot with a defender on her hip.
Twenty-six seconds later, the Jags struck again when Kyndra Zeigler scored off a cross from Ashleigh Meyer.
Meyer was not finished. She scored a goal of her own on a cross that sailed over the goalie's head and into the back of the net with 14:30 left in the game.
Basehor-Linwood had limited chances in the second half; however, BLHS forward Jessica Smith did beat the MVHS defense on several runs and had several shots on goal.
Sophomore goalie Becky Newhouse was up to the challenge. She had a full-extension diving save of a shot to the far post and also forced Smith to shoot wide when the forward had Newhouse one-on-one.
With the victory, Mill Valley improves to 8-4-1 on the season and 4-1 in the Kaw Valley League. Mill Valley played Tuesday at Bonner Springs, but the score was not available at press time. The Jaguars play again Thursday at Maranatha's home field, Stump Park.
Regionals get under way next week, and the Lady Jags are expected to be among the top seeds in their region.