News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Boys soccer has rough week

The boys soccer squad suffered losses in both their games last week: a 1-3 loss at Philomath on Tuesday, March 23, and a 0-7 loss to Summit on Thursday. Injuries and spring break absences were a factor, as the Outlaws had to play with a short roster.

Tuesday’s game against Philomath was played on the turf at Crescent Valley High School. The Outlaws scored first in the 15th minute of the match. Freshman Bryan Riemer played a beautiful ball behind the Warriors defense to a charging Ricky Huffman, who kicked it in for the score. The lone goal of the contest was the bright spot of the night for the Outlaws.

Coach Jeff Hussman noted Riemer’s play.

“Bryan has been such a nice surprise to our team,” he said. “He is a very skilled and creative player, and he has adjusted quite well, not only to a new school, but to a new community having recently moved from Columbia. The team really enjoys his personality and his soccer skills also come in handy.”

It was a very physical and evenly matched game. Twenty-five minutes into the contest, the Warriors evened the score 1-1 to end the half.

The Warriors scored twice more in the second half and tallied the win.

Hussman told The Nugget that the success the Outlaws had moving the ball early in the first half was absorbed by the Warriors defense as the game progressed.

“We did a good job of controlling midfield play, but couldn’t capitalize,” said Hussman. “By contrast, Philomath plays a very direct style of play, often relying on a counterattack from their very fast strikers, trying to catch our defense out of position.”

Sisters suffered an unfortunate loss late in the game when keeper Nathaniel Alvarez sustained an arm injury and had to leave the field.

Sisters was scheduled to play league rival Sweet Home on Thursday, but the Huskies canceled with short notice just a day prior to the game. The Outlaws scrambled and were able to schedule a game against 6A Summit. It turned out to be a very lopsided match. The Storm is one of the strongest teams in the state, and the Outlaws took some hard knocks.

Summit scored early and the Outlaws were never able to maintain possession of the ball. Hussman told The Nugget they had no choice but to put all 11 players behind the ball and let the Storm bring their offense to them.

“It can be very frustrating and exhausting as a player when you have no option but to hunker in and play defense,” said Hussman. “You can only play defense so long against a strong team like Summit.”

Freshman Austin Dean stepped in as goalkeeper for the game, as Alvarez played as a center back in defense rather than keeper. Hussman said he did an outstanding job.

“Austin is a natural athlete and aggressive in goal,” said Hussman. “This was his first varsity start as goalkeeper and I really could not ask more from him. He positions himself well and is bold in making a play on the ball. Yes, we conceded seven goals, but he had 18 saves on the night, many shots at point blank range. He’s the kind of player that would contribute anywhere on the field.”

Despite the loss, Hussman was proud of his players in their uphill battle against the Storm, and specifically noted sophomore Gus Patton, freshmen Waylon Kiefer and Taine Martin, and junior AJ Scholl.

“These guys all put in very solid minutes,” said Hussman. “They don’t get too many minutes on the varsity pitch and it is a lot to deal with when the opposition is relentlessly going forward. But these guys never gave up.”

Sisters was to play at Cascade on Tuesday, March 30. They will finish up their season at Newport on Thursday.


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