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Panther soccer celebrates Senior Night
Dani franco good one
Great Bend's Dani Franco - photo by JIM MISUNAS Great Bend Tribune


Great Bend’s soccer team congratulated four seniors, one from Venezuela, after outlasting McPherson 1-0 in Thursday’s regular-season finale.
Scoring star Dani Franco converted a perfect centering pass from teammate Luis Zamarripa for the game-winning goal with 30:11 left in the first half. The Panthers (7-9) will compete in a 5A soccer regional Tuesday.
Great Bend will carry momentum after recent wins against Liberal and Wichita Independent and a 1-0 loss to 6A champion Dodge City.
“It’s fun to end the regular season for our seniors with a win,” said Great Bend coach Jesus Loera, Jr. “Hats off to McPherson, which is a good quality team. They are a great soccer team. They are a good technical team that plays within the rules. This shows off how much we’ve progressed this season.”
The Panthers dominated time of possession the first half to dictate the game’s tempo.
“We’ve learned to get more guys involved and keep possession of the ball,” Loera said. “We’ve done a much better job in transition getting the ball back defensively.”
Great Bend’s offense was generated by Dani Franco, Humberto Alonzo and Jesus Sanchez. Goalie Rodriguez turned back several quality McPherson shots. McPherson’s Trenton Stecklein made the game’s best defensive play when he deflected a shot by Dani Franco when goalie Nathan Lloyd shifted away from the goal.
McPherson’s Samie Jamie had the Bullpups’ best shot stopped by Rodriguez. Connor Williams and Britton Haigh also missed high quality attempts.
“McPherson did what they needed to try and score,” Loera said. “They kept us out the attacking third. They stayed organized on defense.”
The Panthers’ future is bright with goalie Ishmael Rodriguez from Venezuela, midfielder Brian Galindo, defender Josue Rodriguez and forward Juvenal Garay playing their final scheduled home game.

The Panthers defeated Liberal 6-4 Monday. Dani Franco and Oscar Martinez each scored two goals. Junior Franco and Jesus Sanchez each scored one goal. The Panthers are ranked ninth among 16 western soccer teams for regional play next week.
Senior Night will honor midfielder Brian Galindo, defender Josue Rodriguez, forward Juvenal Garay and goalie Ishmael Rodriguez
“The guys are doing a good job getting the ball and getting us extra possessions,” said Great Bend coach Jesus Loera, Jr. “We’re getting more pressure on the other team’s defense.”
Liberal’s Christian Sobalvarro scored two goals, Elmer Rivera and Mike Fonseca scored goals. Rivera had two assists and Robert Campos had an assist for Liberal (4-11-1, 1-7 WAC).
The Panthers played No. 1 ranked 6A Dodge City to a 1-0 loss on the road last week. Dodge City beat the Panthers 6-0 in their first meeting.
“We gave Dodge City a great game. Our guys are buying into what we want to do,” Loera said. “We played Dodge City close and our guys gained confidence from that.”

L—Salina Central 1-5
W—Liberal 2-0
L—Wichita Heights 2-3
L—Wichita East 2-3
W—Wichita West 2-1
W—Hays High 5-2
L—Hays High 0-2
L—Dodge City 0-6
L—Manhattan 0-1
L—Garden City 1-2
W—Hays-TMP 5-1
L—Garden City 0-2
W—Wichita Independent 8-1
L—Dodge City 0-1
W—Liberal 6-4
W—McPherson 1-0

Dodge City 8-0 14-2
Garden City 5-3 10-6
Great Bend 3-5 7-9
Hays High 3-5 10-6
Liberal 1-7 4-12-1
Great Bend 6, Liberal 4
Garden City 5, TMP 1
Dodge City 3, Liberal 0
Great Bend 1, McPherson 0
Hays 7, TMP 2

1—Goddard-Eisenhower 14-1
2—Wichita Carroll 14-1-1
3—Kapaun Mount Carmel 12-2-1
4—Salina Central 12-3
5—Maize South 10-4
6—Emporia 10-6
7—Newton 9-6
8—Salina South 7-9
9—Great Bend 7-9
10—Valley Center 5-10
11—Maize 5-11-1
12—Topeka West 4-10-1
13—Liberal 4-11-1
14—Wichita Heights 3-11
15—Andover 2-10-2
16—Goddard 1-15