It was the last regular season game for the Wapakoneta girls soccer team, and after an up and down season on the pitch, the girls finished with a statement.
Wapakoneta hosted the Kenton Wildcats Tuesday evening, and sent them home backing, bearing a 4-1 loss to the Redskins.
Varsity head coach Ross Kantner said he was proud of the way the girls finished the season, and hopes to take this momentum into sectional play.
“We need to take the intensity and the enthusiasm we played with in the second half and play like that for 80 minuts,” Kantner said.
Kantner said it seemed to be a tale of two halves out there, where the Redskins were almost being outplayed in the first half. While Wapakoneta was able to get a first-half goal to take a 1-0 lead into intermission, Kantner said he challenged the girls to step it up.
“First half we just didn’t do what we wanted to do, so at halftime we had a little talk, emphasized where we needed to take the ball, and we were able to do that,” Kantner said “The kids responded well, at halftime we challenged them to take over, and the responded.”
Kantner said he was really happy with the play of their leader, Sara Warner, and how she was able to find her role on the field to be most effective.
Kantner said at first Warner was playing only forward, but was able to find her niche at the midfield position.
Warner finished the evening with two goals against the Wildcats, including the last goal of the regular season.
Warner also scored the first goal of the season for the Redskins.
“Sara is very strong on the ball, she’s a versatile player,” Kantner said. “I think next year, she’s realizing she can play some other positions, and she can play them well. So I’m looking forward to next year.”
Wapakoneta now prepares for a tough test in sectional play, as they travel to Celina to take on the Bulldogs a week from Thursday.
Celina is unbeated in the WBL and Kantner said he hopes to take that second-half momentum all the way to Thursday.
“We find ourselves playing the No. 1 seed, Celina,” Kantner said. “We’ve got our work cut out for us.”