SHERIDAN — There were plenty of chances for more, but an Emily Julian PK turned out to be all the Lady Broncs needed Friday night.
Battling freezing wind and light snow flurries, the Sheridan High School girls soccer team beat Cheyenne South 1-0 Friday night after dominating possession for most of the game, especially in the second half.
“I was pleased with the effort all game,” head coach Tom Racette said. “We kind of ground it out. I think we just were a little more patient and composed in the second half. We did have a lot of opportunities, but I guess we only needed one.”
The first half was scattered for both teams as they worked to find a rhythm in the cold weather. The Lady Broncs would earn two corners in the first 10 minutes of play.
Their first real chance on goal came when Maddy McClure crossed a ball in low to Julian, who hit a hard shot just left of the post.
Ten minutes into the game, McClure would gather a loose ball off a corner from Drew Dafoe but the goalie would dive on the ball near the right corner of the goal line before McClure could get a foot on the ball.
As the half wound down, Julian set up a free kick awarded to the Lady Broncs after a South hand ball. Her attempt would bang off the crossbar, straight down and back into play where the goalie would again collect among swarming Lady Broncs, leaving the score 0-0 at the break.
In the second half, the Lady Broncs put together passes and held the ball in South’s half for nearly the remainder of the game.
Julian’s penalty kick came just after halftime when she was pushed down from behind in the box on a corner. She calmly slotted her attempt home in the bottom left corner of then net.
Strong running up the wings from McClure and Jennae Fieldgrove each generated multiple chances that would sail high and wide. South battled, using physical play to hold Sheridan at the one goal.
“We’ve got to move the ball quicker when a team’s playing real physical like that,” Racette said. “If we keep the ball moving quicker, they’ll be bumping air. We’re a very young team and our learning is pretty steep right now.”
South’s one real chance was in the 23rd minute when a shot banged off the far post past keeper Bailey McClean, who otherwise made things look easy in goal Friday night.
Sheridan will play Laramie at noon today in similar weather conditions. Saturday’s forecast has a high of 30 degrees and a chance of snow showers.
“The keys for us again will be composure,” Racette said. “We know it’s going to be cold again, so we need to stay composed, settled down, and we can’t make defensive mistakes.”