This was not the same Rose Hill boys soccer team that had won back-to-back Class 4-1A state championships.
Graduation has stripped the Rockets of most of their red glare and it was evident early as McPherson High scored three quick goals before cruising to a 5-0 victory Thursday at McPherson Stadium.
Even though it was a different Rocket team, its big-time reputation alone made this a highly anticipated game.
The Bullpups certainly used their heads — literally. Four of their five goals came on headers.
Bullpup coach Chris Adrian was ecstatic with his team’s play, especially on set pieces.
“I was really happy with our guys,” said Adrian, whose 1-1 team competes next week in the Maize South Invitational. “The work rate they played after a really grueling game they played Tuesday... that was the key.”
Adrian stressed to his team that it had to be ready from the get-go.
“We can’t have another 80-minute battle. We’ve got to come out and show we’re the better team early, score two goals, three goals early on,” he said.
MHS played as though it was shot out of a cannon. Patrick Munsey scored just over a minute into the game off a great pass by Darrius Armstrong. Five minutes later it was Andric McGill who headed in an Armstrong feed. Freshman Drew Schrader made it 3-0 with a header and Munsey scored his second goal of the first half off an assist by Jackson Lloyd to make it 4-0 at the break.
“He’s a huge aerial threat,” Adrian said of Munsey. “He doesn’t get a lot of credit for that. Man, he uses his head well out there to win those balls off corners and free kicks.”
Lloyd came up with another assist when he set up yet another header by Munsey with 10 minutes left in the game as the Bullpups had it on auto pilot for the second half. Lloyd has been a bright spot so far this season with his consistent play, Adrian said.
The MHS JVs evened their record at 1-1 with a 2-0 victory. Trey Hett and Jael Jaime scored the goals, with Francisco Alvarez and Rhett Edmonson credited with assists.