BY JIM MISUNAS
The good news is Liberal’s high-scoring Kim Alarcon didn’t convert any goals like she did last year against Great Bend.
The bad news is Liberal’s new goalie Kim Alarcon pitched a shutout to spark the Redskins past Great Bend 1-0 in Tuesday’s Western Athletic Conference soccer opener. Great Bend (1-2) plays at Garden City Thursday in another WAC game.
Liberal’s aggressive style converted a second-half goal when Bryanna Banuelos scored at the 25:38 mark of the second half. Banuelos and Gisselle Melendez consistently pressured the Panthers’ defense after halftime fueled by a 20 mph northeast wind.
The Redskins produced quality shots several times until Melendez and Banuelos worked together to pressure the Panthers.
Time-after-time, Panther goalie Casandra Enriguez and stout defender Joanna Sanchez did a solid job keeping the game scoreless. Sanchez missed several valuable minutes when her shoulder was injured. Panther defenders Mikyla Meza, Sayra Solis and Martha Fletcher also contributed defensively.
Panther offensive standout Mayra Ramirez worked her magic from time-to-time attacking the Liberal defense. But she was unable to convert any goals. Ramirez’s best shot was stopped by Alarcon at the nine-minute mark.
Angela Enriquez delivered the Panthers’ best quality shot that went over the goal with a minute left. Karina Mata delivered a solid centering pass and Meza had a quality crossing pass.
“We worked hard defensively tonight,” said Great Bend coach Margarita Ayala. “We just need to play more aggressive at times. We had players miss some time with injuries today. I care about the score, but care more about our players who were injured.”
Ayala said Liberal took better advantage of an aggressive style to gain a subtle advantage.
WAC GIRLS SOCCER
Liberal 2-0 3-3
Hays High 1-0 4-1
Garden City 0-0 2-1
Great Bend 0-1 1-2
Dodge City 0-2 1-6
THURSDAY—Great Bend 4, Hays-TMP 0; Maize South 2, Hays High 1; Wichita Northwest 2, Liberal 1; Garden City 3, Goddard 0; Garden City 3, Goddard 0
SATURDAY—Wichita Heights 2, Liberal 1; Hays High 1, Andover Central 0; Goddard Eisenhower 4, Garden City 0
Liberal 1, Great Bend 0
Hays High 1, Dodge City 0
Garden City at Guymon, Okla.
Great Bend at Garden City
Dodge City at Hays-TMP
Liberal at Hays High
Liberal at Great Bend
Garden City at Wichita Trinity
LIBERAL (2-0, 3-3)—W Dodge City 1-0; W Wichita Classical 1-0; Goddard Tournament (L Wichita East 0-2; L Wichita Northwest 1-2; L Wichita Heights 1-2) W *Great Bend 1-0; 4-4—*at Hays High; 4-8—at Garden City; 4-11—*Great Bend; 4-16—Hays-TMP; 4-18—*Hays High; 4-29/5-4—Wichita North Tournament; 5-7—*Garden City; 5-9—*at Dodge City
HAYS HIGH (1-0, 4-1)—W Hays-TMP 7-1; McPherson Tournament (W Salina South 3-1; L Maize South 1-2, W Andover Central 1-0); L *Dodge City 0-1; 4-4—*Liberal; 4-8—Junction City; 4-9—*at Great Bend; 4-15—*at Garden City; 4-18—*at Liberal; 4-22—*Great Bend; 4-25—at Hays-TMP; 4-29—*Garden City; 5-2—*Dodge City; 5-7—Nickerson; 5-9—at Wichita Trinity
GARDEN CITY (0-0, 2-1)—Goddard Tournament (W Andover 2-1; W Goddard 3-0; L Goddard Eisenhower 0-4); 4-2—at Guymon, Okla.; 4-4—*Great Bend; 4-5—at Wichita Trinity; 4-8—*Liberal; 4-9—at Hays-TMP; 4-11—*Dodge City; 4-15—*Hays High; 4-16—*at Great Bend; 4-23—*at Dodge City; 4-29—*at Hays High; 5-2—Hays-TMP; 5-7—*at Liberal; 5-10—Wichita South
GREAT BEND (0-1, 1-2)—L Wichita Trinity 2-4; W Hays-TMP 4-0; L *Liberal 0-1; 4-4—at Garden City; 4-8—*Dodge City; 4-9—*Hays High; 4-11—*at Liberal; 4-16—Garden City4-18—at Nickerson; 4-22—*at Hays High; 4-25—*at Dodge City; 4-29—Hays-TMP; 5-6—Manhattan; 5-7—at Wichita Southeast; 5-9—Junction City
DODGE CITY (0-2, 1-6)—L *Liberal 0-1; L SM South 0-4; L Blue Valley SW 0-8; Wichita South Titan (W Winfield 5-2; L Salina Central 0-1; L Hutchinson 2-5); L *Hays High 0-1; 4-4—at Hays-TMP: 4-8—*at Great Bend; 4-11—at Garden City; 4-16—at Wichita Trinity; 4-23—Garden City; 4-25—*Great Bend; 4-30—Wichita South; 5-2—*at Hays High; 5-9—*Liberal