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Great Bend beats Liberal for first WAC win
Prep Soccer
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It only took one goal for the Great Bend High School girls’ soccer team to secure its first Western Athletic Conference win on Thursday at Cavanaugh Field.
The Lady Panthers defeated Liberal 1-0, their first home win of the season.
“I think this win relieves a lot of the pressure on the team,” GBHS head coach Gus Prieto said. “We’ve been playing well the last few games, but we lost in the last five minutes against Hays. That hurts. Against Dodge, we lost in the last two minutes in overtime. It was a pretty good game against Dodge.
“We’re still fighting injuries. We have 15 varsity players left, so this win means a lot.”
Berenice Prieto scored the only goal in the game.
Morgan Harwood took the ball down the left sideline past multiple Liberal defenders to the corner. She turned the ball and crossed it to Berenice, who was running to the back-door post for the goal.
It’s the second time Great Bend (2-4-2 overall, 1-3-1 WAC) beat the Lady Redskins. The first time, which came in the Wichita South Titans Classic, was not a conference game.
Gus Prieto said that the win was likely due to his players settling in to new positions to fill in for injured athletes.
“They’re playing better,” Gus Prieto said. “They are getting progress. We’re just having trouble finishing (at the goal). We’re doing a great job creating chances to score.”
That was the case against Liberal.
Great Bend had several chances to score against the Lady Redskins, and took five shots on goal in the second half alone.
Berenice Prieto missed an opportunity to give the Lady Panthers an insurance goal when a Liberal defender was called for a handball inside the goalie’s box.
Her shot to the left corner was blocked by Liberal goalkeeper Sophia Nguyen.
Gus Prieto said that his midfielders have been able to control the ball and that led to his team’s success at creating scoring opportunities.
“The center mids, they were able to control the ball a little more this game,” Gus Prieto said. “That’s what we need. We need to control the ball first. Get the ball in the midfield. That way, we can make some good passes. We can create more opportunities to score.”
Great Bend is back in action on Tuesday when it travels to Garden City. The junior varsity game begins at 4 p.m. with the varsity game to follow.