Today we played our second game. Our first game, we only had 2 of our offensive players and 9 kids in total. Today was our first game with our full complement of kids. I was confident we would be competitive. They did not let me down.
First Quarter starts off with them with the ball. They moved it right down and were around our 18 for about 2 minutes. We finally worked it out of there only to lose it at midfield. After a few minutes of back and forth our girls began working the ball up the field. Our forward got it at midfield, passed to our other forward who passed it right back. She shot it in from just past the 18, putting us up 1-0. We outshot them 3-2. They looked real good.
Second Quarter started off, we put our better goalie in. She does not want to play goalie any more and didn’t seem to give her best. We got called for a push outside the 18. We thought it was an indirect kick, but she kicked it right at the goal. It was a beautiful shot, but it shouldn’t have counted. I asked the ref and he shrugged his shoulders at me. Our mids started playing lazy, not getting back on defense or not moving up on offense. They are the strength of our team. We gave up 2 more goals because our mids weren’t helping the defenders. Sadly our goalie wasn’t moving for the ball, just bending at the waist. We were down 3-1 and were outshot 5-2. It was a very sloppy quarter and the kids were already trying to figure out what went wrong.
Third Quarter we put our original goalie in. Our team played much better. They moved the ball better, were defending better and our goalie was playing better. We were getting shots on goal and they weren’t. 2 of our 4 mids were dogging it, weren’t moving up on offense and not moving back on defense, despite constant substitution. If our mids do their job, we are tough to beat. We outshot them 3-0, but couldn’t score. We were still losing 3-1.
Fourth Quarter we came out like a house on fire. We were moving the ball dow the field with relative ease. Our forward and mid hit on a give and go with the forward scoring a beautiful goal. We stole the ball back, beautiful play by our defender, started the buildup and the same to kids hit on another give and go with the mid scoring. Beautiful play all around. They got the ball moved it up, passed to the middle as our defenders watched the girl go right by them. Our goalie got one hand on it, but couldn’t stop it. We had 4 more shots on goal, but couldn’t put it in. We had a nice build up stopped by the end game whistle. We outshot them 6-2 , but still lost 4-3.
Despite our strong play we lost. We lost because our mids are not playing the whole field and some kids don’t want to play a spot, so they give half an effort. All together we made about 6 mistakes and we payed for them. Our mids have to play the whole field and our defense needs to get in front of the offense not run alongside them. It was our first game with all of our kids and we are really close to where we want to be. They are thinking, reacting and know where to be. The wins will come for them.