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Despite loss, coach feels positive as SH enters league


September 18, 2013

A 4-1 loss to Taft on the road Thursday left Coach Ryan Regrutto optimistic about this soccer season.

“It was one of the best games of the season so far as far as commitment,” Regrutto said. While the first half didn’t go so well, the team rebounded in the second half and competed with the Tigers.

The Huskies underestimated Taft at first, he said, but Taft has a few “really technical players,” along with some players who just love the game.

One of those “really talented” players brought the ball down and through the Huskies defense in the first five minutes to score the first goal of the game. Taft scored another goal within eight minutes.

The Huskies scored when Steven Ulmer had a free kick. The ball bounced around in front of the goal, and Egan Shamek was able to knock it in near the end of the first half.

That nudged the momentum toward the Huskies, Regrutto said. “You could feel it starting to shift our way. We had some opportunities to get the ball going forward.”

The Huskies missed a game-tying goal on a corner kick across the box. Shamek got a header on it, but it went right at a defender and bounced away.

Unfortunately, instead of 2-2 going into the second half, Taft put away a third shot on the counterattack in about the last play of the half, Regrutto said. The Tigers got an early goal in the second half, but the Huskies stepped up and stopped any further damage.

The whole team was competing then, Regrutto said. He was seeing head balls and slide tackles he’s never seen his team do before.

He believes some of the players were surprised at how well they were performing, he said. In the end, it was clear they could compete.

Goalie Matt Davis stepped into the position this season, Regrutto said. “He’s just been outstanding, with several spectacular saves.”

He easily stopped their sure goals, Regrutto said. “He’s really improved with his effort and ability. He’s done exceptionally well. Essentially, he’s been playing goalie for two weeks.

Shooting was fairly one-side in the first half, Regrutto said, but the Huskies matched up well with Taft in the second with several chances at the goal.

They have been focusing on defense in practice, Regrutto said. That’s coming along, so they’ve started focusing on making the offense productive.

“It was a good feeling coming home on the bus,” Regrutto said. “I’m just proud to feel comfortable and excited with what the team’s doing, putting in the effort.”

The Huskies lost 6-0 to Central on Sept. 10 on the road.

“It wasn’t even close,” Regrutto said. “It was probably one of my worst days as a coach.”

The Huskies face La Pine in their first home game at 4 p.m. on Thursday.

The Huskies should be competitive with the Hawks, he said, as long as they keep their mental game up going into the game.


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