Like so many times this season, the Guyer boys soccer team found itself in a tale of two halves, and against a good Dallas Jefferson squad it cost the Wildcats a chance at victory as they prepare for district play to begin in less than two weeks.
Guyer was outplayed in the first half, then won the battle in the second half as the teams played to a 1-1 draw Friday night at Wildcat Stadium.
“We’re getting halves, but we’re not getting consistent games,” Guyer coach Cody Schroeder said. “Sometimes it’s good for part of a half and bad for part of a half. It’s just not been sustained throughout an entire game. If we get to district and put more consistency together, we’ll be all right.”
Guyer (4-5-1) gave up a regrettable goal in the 27th minute when Jefferson captain Lorenzo Villanueva ripped a shot from 20 yards out over the head of a Guyer defender and under the grasp of Guyer goalkeeper Andrew Singer to give the Patriots a 1-0 lead.
After the team struggled through its first tournament of the season, Schroeder inserted the inexperienced Singer into the starting lineup for the Iron Bridge Classic last week, and the sophomore put together a string of three good games before running into some trouble against two stout opponents in Frisco Centennial and Little Elm.
“We’ve talked about trying to solve the puzzle of who can make the routine play as a keeper,” Schroeder said. “Singer is a young player with a bright future. We just have to keep giving him opportunities. It’s a play he needs to make. He didn’t make it tonight, but he’ll be better the next time he’s out there.”
Guyer answered in the second half, controlling the run of play against the Patriots (4-5-1), putting five shots on goal and connecting in the 54th minute when senior Luis Muro converted a cross from sophomore Josh Kasitz.
Schroeder was pleased to see one of his few varsity veterans step up and make a play to get his team back in the game.
“We need our seniors to all step up,” Schroeder said. “They’re surrounded by young, inexperienced players. We have six sophomores playing extensive minutes on the varsity. Even most of our juniors, this is their first varsity go-around. They need to do a better job of settling us down and dictating the action. We’re starting to get them to do that. We just need more of it.”
After that, Guyer had several opportunities to take the lead, most notably in the 61st minute when Collin Christian made a long run to a loose ball to beat Jefferson’s keeper and fired a shot that was deflected back at him. He gathered the ball and shot again, but the keeper was able to maintain control to avoid another Guyer goal.
“In the second half, we created more opportunities and played with some energy and excitement,” Schroeder said. “The first half we just were intimidated. We have a lot of young players with a lot of inexperience. We’re 10 games into this now, and it should start showing better.”
ADAM BOEDEKER can be reached at 940-566-6872 and via Twitter at @aboedeker.