McPherson High’s girls soccer team couldn’t complete the Salina sweep here Thursday.
After knocking off Salina South on Tuesday, the Bullpups were hoping to complete the Salina slam in their home opener, but Brooke Peters’ goal late in the first half stood up the rest of the way in a 1-0 Salina Central victory.
“This team (Central) played differently and they kind of surprised us with how they were playing,” said MHS coach Chris Adrian, whose team completed the first week of play 1-1. “I would have spent money for a timeout. After 5 minutes I wanted to change things, but I couldn’t (there are no timeouts in soccer) until halftime. We haven’t practiced what I needed to tell them.”
Neither team showed much of an offensive spark in the first half, but the game opened up in the second half. Yet, other than a good run by Zaida Chapman 7 minutes in, the Bullpups were stifled in what was a tense defensive struggle.
“In the second half we made some changes and we were finally able to attack much better even though it was against the wind,” Adrian said. “Their keeper (Bailey Driver) made a great save there, that one Zaida hit was going in and she got a fingertip to it. You’ve got to give her credit for making that save even though she hadn’t been tested in the game.”
Adrian said his young team might not yet be in top game shape yet.
“Honestly, we didn’t have the same energy in tonight’s game as the last game,” he said. “I don’t know if was because it was our first home game, some nerves maybe or just being a little bit tired... our girls Tuesday left it out there.”
MHS won the JV game 1-0 on a first-half goal by Elisabeth Evans. They are now 1-1 on the the year.
The Bullpups will be hosting the 8th annual McPherson Invitational beginning Tuesday. MHS plays old rival Newton at 8 p.m. The tournament continues on Friday and wraps up on Saturday.