Goals hard to come by in Junction City's draw with Wichita West

Junction City's Jaylynne Lechuga-Adame (left) looks to steal the ball from a Wichita Southeast player.

After an overtime game Thursday night against Wichita West High School, the Junction City Lady Jay soccer team found themselves in a familiar situation Monday night against Wichita Southeast High School. With both teams failing to punch one into the net during regulation, JC entered an overtime period for a second consecutive game.

Although both teams had their fair share of opportunities to end the game, time ran out as it ended in a scoreless draw.

“I feel like we played pretty well,” head coach Mitchell DeHoff said. “Probably our most complete game of the season as far as coming out strong and being able to carry energy, and focus throughout an entire game. I think we’ve performed pretty well. We would have loved to have found a way to get the ball in the back of the net and take the win, but it’s just hard to score.”

Deep into the second half, the Lady Jays began applying a lot of pressure in the Lady Golden Buffaloes zone. Corner kicks were landing in the box, but no one was able to knock one into the net. 

“I felt we definitely created enough to score,” DeHoff said. “It’s unfortunate when you feel you’ve done enough to score a couple goals, but none of them actually come off. But, it’s the way it goes; that’s why defense is so important all the time.”

Wichita-Southeast finally got the ball out of its zone and into JC territory when a JC player committed a handball in the box with just over eight minutes remaining. This set up a penalty shot to potentially take the lead in a game where goals were hard to come by. The ball was kicked off the crossbar, and Wichita Southeast recovered the rebound, but failed to get a good shot back at the net. Goalie Elisa Robinson got her hands on the ball and punted it out of the Lady Jay zone. The back-line was what really stood out for JC in the game. 

“Emma (Beamer) just reads the field so well back there,” DeHoff said. “Fourth year playing varsity, her and (Katelyn) Craft are both four-year varsity players for us back there. With the addition of Jocelyn (Luke), who starts and plays a lot of the game, and Mya Silva coming off the bench — they did an absolutely fantastic job covering ground, forcing the ball wide and making sure the majority of the attacks were ended pretty quickly. Elisa (Robinson) had a couple incredible saves tonight that just kept us in the game.”

The Lady Jays will be back at it Tuesday against Wichita Warriors Homeschool. Playing back-to-back overtime games is a lot of extra wear and tear players, so DeHoff hopes his players get proper rest so they are ready to go.

“Recovery would be the main thing; it’s tiring going into overtime,” DeHoff said. “We ride with some of our better players during overtime to chase that winner. So taking care of ourselves and getting a lot of sleep tonight — that’s going to be the main thing.”

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