Outlaws get off to rough start on soccer field

 

Last updated 9/5/2023 at 10:11am



The Outlaws kicked off their soccer season with a 2-0 loss to Madras on Tuesday, August 29, and two days later fell 6-3 to Redmond.

Due to the smoky conditions, Tuesday’s game was moved to Prineville. The smoke has been a challenge for the Outlaws, as they were only able to practice twice outside, and the rest of the time share gym space with other teams.

Coach Jeff Husmann told The Nugget that the Outlaws were more nervous at the start of the match than what usually characterizes the team, and for most of the first half they had trouble connecting simple passes.

Husmann said, “We were disorganized and chasing and hurrying when we didn’t need to. We had very little possession in the first half, and they managed to score midway through. Madras did outplay us, but we knew that we were nowhere near reaching our potential.”

The Outlaws played better in the second half as they possessed the ball more, made sharper and more accurate passes, and created chances to score.

Husmann noted Logan Ryba, who stepped into the goalie spot. Husmann said Ryba has a great sense of attacking the ball. The Outlaws received strong play from Cooper Merrill, who is hungry, and attentive to learn his position as the holding midfielder. Evan Martin played a solid game on defense.

Husmann said, “The success of the team will hinge on the season-long development of some of the players who are stepping into the starting line-up for the first time.”

Two days later the Outlaws lost to Redmond, who has some very skilled players and some speed, particularly in the middle of the pitch.

Sisters made a few mistakes on defense, which allowed Redmond to get goals right up the middle.

“We stayed too wide, opening up channels for them to run into, penetrating our back line and leaving our goalkeeper exposed,” said Husmann. They also controlled much of the action in the first 20 minutes of the match.”

The Outlaws gave up three goals within the first 25 minutes, and could have easily folded, but they stayed composed, made adjustments, and the midfield began to possess the ball and find space behind Redmond’s back line.

Momentum shifted the Outlaws’ way late in the second half when Carson Bell found the back of the net. Bell ripped a shot from approximately 24 feet out, and dipped it in just under the crossbar.

“Carson is good at finding those small spaces between the defense, and that goal energized us” said Husmann.

Seven minutes later, Andrew Islas weaved into the heart of Redmond’s defense and slotted the ball into the back of the net for his first varsity goal, thanks to a smart assist from Austin Dean.

At the half, the Outlaws trailed 2-3.

Sisters has a small bench, and fatigue was a factor in the second half. Redmond scored a couple more goals and were up by two with 10 minutes left on the clock. Sisters continued to persevere and earned a corner kick. Vincent Christian took the corner and Danny Benson attacked the ball out of the air and scored. Redmond scored the final goal and recorded the win.

The Outlaws were to host Mountain View on Tuesday, September 5, in a non-league contest. They will play on the road at Crook County on Thursday.

 

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