On Monday night, the Hickman girls soccer team dominated Borgia in almost every aspect of the game. The Kewpies attempted 10 corner kicks to Borgia’s one. For the majority of the game, the Kewpies pressed the ball into Borgia territory, while the Knights rarely crossed midfield. Hickman took close to 10 shots, while Borgia had less than five. However, Borgia still won 2-1.
Mistakes cost the Kewpies (5-8-1) a chance to edge closer to .500 for the season and gain momentum as the district tournament approaches.
“The kids are going to have to wake up and do what they are supposed to do,” Hickman coach Jon Strodtman said.
Clinging to a 1-0 lead midway through the second half, the Kewpies made their first mistake when Hickman senior Megan Darter pushed Borgia’s Fry Macey in the 18-yard box, setting up a penalty kick for Courtney Bresnahan. Hickman goalkeeper Kelsey Mescher guessed the direction of the kick correctly, but Bresnahan’s sure-footed kick was just out of Mescher’s reach. Although he didn’t get animated when the referee pointed to the penalty mark after the foul, Strodtman disagreed with the call.
“The PK that we gave away was a soft PK,” Strodtman said.
The winning goal for the Knights (9-7) came shortly after the penalty kick. In its only corner kick of the game, Borgia capitalized on another Hickman miscue. As Borgia senior sweeper Connie Jones lined up for the corner, the Kewpies forgot to mark midfielder Lara Menke, leaving her open. The savvy Jones saw the opening and bent a perfect kick to Menke, who headed the ball for a goal.
Borgia coach John Runion admitted that the Kewpies outplayed his squad in almost every aspect of the game, except for capitalizing on mistakes.
“We were just in the right place at the right time,” Runion said of the penalty and corner kick. “It was nice to have the opportunity to finish (when the mistakes were made). They had the better of the play, no doubt about it. It wasn’t pretty, but we’ll take the win.”
After the game, corner kick strategy was on the minds of the Hickman players.
“We just couldn’t get them in,” Hickman midfielder Edith Lopez said about the corner kicks. Lopez took all 10 of the Kewpies’ corners, and while some were close, none materialized on the scoreboard. Lopez, showing her disappointment by keeping her eyes fixed on the ground, said she usually focuses on one teammate that crashes the goal. She then attempts to place the ball so her teammate can get to it in stride.
“They (the kicks) were pretty close, but we’ve had problems scoring,” Lopez said.