High school soccer: Brookings Bobcats split doubleheader against Harrisburg
BROOKINGS — The Brookings Bobcats split a pair of games with Harrisburg at the Fishback Soccer Complex on Tuesday night. The boys’ team picked up a 2-0 win over the Tigers while the girls’ team fell by a score of 7-1.
The Bobcats will return to action when they host O’Gorman on Thursday night.
• Brookings 2, Harrisburg 0
The Bobcats picked up a big win over the Tigers in the nightcap of the doubleheader as they look to keep pace with Harrisburg in the Class AA standings down the stretch.
Brookings entered the night as the 13th seed in Class AA but improved to 5-5-1 with the win and leaped Harrisburg and Huron to move into 11th place.
To earn the win the Bobcats relied on some stingy defense and a pair of opportunistic goals. Jordan Mofle raced up the sideline to put the Bobcats on the board with his goal in the 31st minute, and Junior Eberline came up big in the second half, scoring in the 71st minute to help put away the game.
“We took advantage of the high line that Harrisburg was playing and played the style that we wanted,” Brookings head coach Reece Weber said. “We wanted to bounce the ball and attack from behind and we got two goals out of it, so it worked out pretty well for us tonight.”
Eberline finished with five shots and two on goal while Rylan Eide had one shot. Elie Wongondombi had one shot, Noah Kiekchefer had three shots and one on goal and Mofle had two shots with a shot on goal.
Tony Nguyen earned the shutout by stopping all four shots.
After defeating the Tigers on Tuesday, the Bobcats have another tall task as top-ranked O’Gorman visits Brookings on Thursday night. But Weber believes that the Bobcats’ intensity could be the deciding factor for a potential upset.
“Technically, we’re fine,” Weber said. “Tactically, we’re fine. It’s just going to come down to whether we play with intensity or not. Hopefully, we can bring it on Thursday.”
• Harrisburg 7, Brookings 1
The Bobcats fell to the second-ranked Tigers on Tuesday but managed to keep it close in the first half.
Harrisburg took a 2-0 lead on Ella Wide’s goal in the ninth minute and Regina Stoeser’s goal in the 13th minute but the Bobcats were able to create an opportunity that led to Elise Lefer’s penalty kick in the 25th minute.
“It was one of the times that we connected some passes together and got the ball forward,” Brookings head coach Adam Juba said. “Elise recognized that she just needed to put her head down and go directly toward the goal and she earned a penalty [shot], which was great. It feels good to get at least one goal against a team like that.”
Although Lefers’s goal cut the Harrisburg lead down to 2-1, the Bobcats wouldn’t have another opportunity as Harrisburg controlled possession. A goal from Elsie Odney gave the Tigers a 3-1 lead going into halftime and Harrisburg scored four times in the second half to cruise to victory.
“They just have a lot of people that can score and they’re pretty lethal,” Juba said. “It’s something we tried to adjust for and we did our best but all things considered, we struggled to connect when we had the ball. I felt like it kind of dwelled on the girls that we didn’t really have the ball much and we kind of struggled with that idea.”
That ability to connect on their passes and create opportunities is something that Juba would like to see as the Bobcats host O’Gorman on Thursday.
“When we pass, we’re so much more dangerous when we can move the ball around the field,” Juba said. “We just didn’t have that today but I have faith and I think it’s a one-time thing. We’ll move on and the girls know what’s expected and they’ll deliver.”
Lefers had the lone shot on net for the Bobcats. Ashley Rients made 16 saves in the loss.