The Waconia girls soccer team had a busy week, playing four games in 6 days. After 1-1 ties with Mankato West and Orono, the Wildcats defeated New Prague 1-0 before a 5-1 loss to DeLaSalle. The Wildcats move to a 3-2-4 record on the season, but remain alive in the chase for the Wright County Conference Championship as they are 3-0-1 in conference play.
New Prague 0
In a key Wright County Conference match for both teams, Waconia High School girls soccer traveled to New Prague for a Thursday night battle under the lights.
With both teams needing a win remain in the hunt for the Wright County Conference Title the atmosphere was set for a great match.
Watching the game, spectators would not have known that Waconia was playing their third match in 4 days as their energy was high and they were looking to press the ball and send numbers forward.
Three minutes into the game Waconia would have the first chance to score on the night when Chloe Jaeger received the ball in space and took a shot that missed the far post by mere inches forcing an outstanding New Prague goalkeeper to dive and push the ball to the corner.
Eight minutes later, Bryn Theis’s throw would find Melissa Honnold in the goal area but her shot was blocked for yet another wildcat corner. Moments later it was Theis again with a great chance to score but her shot from six yards out was blocked by the swarming New Prague defense.
With the score tied 0-0 at half time, both teams would come out of the break sending numbers forward and looking to open the score. Ellie Gove moved from defense to offense for the cats and her dynamic runs opened up the passing game for the visiting Waconia team. On a counter attack, Gove was able to play the feet of Tess Johnson, whose pass to Chloe Jaeger at the top of the goal area was perfectly timed. Jaeger, the leading scorer on the wildcat team, turned and half volleyed the ball into the goal giving the visiting cats a 1-0 lead with 30 minutes to go.
New Prague created chances in the second half but goalkeeper Isabelle Shuster kept the shut-out and made 4 key saves for Waconia.
Waconia would continue to push numbers forward and create 14 additional goal scoring opportunities in the 2nd half but the New Prague defense and specially goalkeeper Taylor Stepka stepped up and denied Waconia any additional goals.
Mankato West 1
The Waconia Wildcats and the Mankato West Scarlets played to a 1-1 tie in an exciting Secton 2 match on Monday night.
To start the game, Waconia held possession of the ball and had clear chances to score. Freshman Bryn Theis and senior Chloe Jaeger each had 2 chances in the first 10 minutes of the match to open the score but their shots were deflected for corner kicks by the Scarlet defense. With Chanda Breeggemann and Jordan Grell controlling the center mid, and Melissa Honnold projecting forward on the right side, the Wildcats kept up the pressure and their efforts were rewarded when a corner kick from Breeggemann found freshman Kennedie Dustin on the front post and her shot found the back of the net.
The scarlets looked to get the ball back with Katie Roberts pushing the ball up the field. The Waconia defense adjusted and controlled the Scarlet attacks in the first half.
Waconia continued to go forward into the attack in the second half and tallied 11 shots on goal, hitting the crossbar twice and narrowly missing the net.
During a counter attack by Mankato West, an odd bounce in the goal area gave the visiting team their most clear chance to score in the form of a penalty kick. Senior Ali Rutz stepped up to the ball and her shot was nearly saved by Waconia’s goalkeeper Isabelle Shuster.
With the game tied 1-1 both teams tried to create offensive chances before the end of regulation but the score remained 1-1.
In the OT period Waconia was clearly the more offensive team, generating 8 shots on goal in the first 5 minutes of play. A free kick by senior Chanda Breeggemann hit the post and missed being a goal by mere inches.
As the game came to a close with a final score of 1-1, it was clear that these two great teams will lead the way in Section 2 postseason play.