Despite losing 7-0 last Thursday to the visiting Bosque Bobcats, East Mountain’s girls soccer team played a lot better than the score would suggest.
In fact, the Lady Timberwolves played the way first-year head coach Matt Painter wants to see them play all of the time.
The T’Wolves kept the Lady Bobcats at bay in the game’s first 40 minutes, holding them to just one goal. “For us to hold a team of this caliber to 1-nil at halftime was exceptional,” Painter said.
Painter wasn’t exaggerating. Bosque blanked East Mountain 10-0 on Sept. 17 in a mercy-rule-shortened contest. It was the T’Wolves’ worst defeat of the season.
“It was a shock, honestly, because the last time we played [the Lady Bobcats] we were down by six in the first half,” East Mountain goalkeeper Aspen Sveum said. “I think the fact that we kept them to one was impressive on our part.” Sveum had 12 saves in the game.
Early in the second half Bosque turned up the heat, scoring two goals in two minutes.
The Lady Bobcats also got more physical and knocked East Mountain’s center-midfielder Victoria Vinsant to the ground twice.
Bosque benefitted from an East Mountain “own goal” when the ball bounced off an East Mountain player and into the net, and by the game’s 56th minute the Lady Bobcats were ahead 5-0.
Then it started to rain.
Bosque scored again in the 67th and 70th minutes, and when the rain began coming down in sheets—sending fans running to their cars—the officials called the game five minutes early, saying it was in both teams’ best interests.
“Our goal in this game was to not get mercy-ruled and we did that,” East Mountain co-captain Taylor Willes said afterward, her hair soaking wet from the rain.
Sveum was even more upbeat. “I had a blast,” she said. “I wish the score was better, but it is what it is and we had fun.”
That’s the kind of attitude Painter wants to see in his players. “The girls were very positive, they were able to lose like champions and I think that’s the big thing,” Painter said.
East Mountain played Tuesday at Rehoboth Christian after The Independent went to print.
Leota started working for The Independent in 2006, working her way up through the ranks. An employee buyout in 2010 led to her ownership of the newspaper. Leota has served on the board of the N.M. Press Association, and is currently its First Vice President. She is passionate about health and wellness, especially mental health, and loves making art. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.