It wasn’t a blowout.
However, three goals proved more than enough for the Great Bend High School boys’ soccer team in a 3-1 Class 5A regional championship triumph over Maize South on Thursday night at Memorial Stadium.
“They were good,” GBHS head coach Gus Prieto said. “We’ve never played them, so you never know. We need to be ready for everything. Ball position and be aggressive.”
The Panthers (14-4-1) advance to a home state tournament quarterfinal game on Tuesday night against defending state-champion Liberal (9-8-1). The match will start at 6 at Cavanaugh Field.
Both Great Bend and Maize South played tight defense throughout most of the first half, limiting chances to score.
Great Bend took six shots, two on goal, in the opening 40 minutes. Maize South took three shots.
Alex Urias broke a scoreless tie with 16:01 remaining in the first half.
Urias took a corner kick and passed it to Mario Espino, who sent the ball into the goalie’s box. Urias found the loose ball on the play and punched it into the net.
“We had a few good chances in the first half,” Prieto said. “We should have scored earlier. Then after the first goal, it was like, when you score a second one, it’ll be done.”
Enrique Guyton scored for the Panthers in the second half.
Jose Mijares found Guyton with a quick pass and Guyton plunged a long shot from outside the goalie’s box and past Mavericks goalkeeper Bailey Benter.
Guyton scored again with 1:31 remaining in the game, receiving a long pass past the Mavs defense and beating Benter.
The Panthers lost the shutout in the final minute, when Mavericks senior forward Micah Kiser scored on a Cooper McClure assist.