Raiders continue search for elusive SEC victory
A challenging season is showing no signs of letting up for the Hastings girls soccer team.
The Raiders slipped to 0-8 in Suburban East Conference play on Tuesday night with a 6-0 loss to White Bear Lake.
In those eight conference losses, Hastings has been able to notch just one goal. That said, coach Scott Meier understands what his team is up against.
“Scoring goals has been hard to come by lately for us, and is related to our ability to possess the ball in creating quality chances,” he said. “Our conference is layered with teams that have high quality players and come after you constantly throughout a match. The potential is there for us to elevate our level of play yet and really get after the remaining games to earn some victories, but it will come with hard work.”
Vs Forest Lake
Hastings lost to Forest Lake on Sept. 24, 6-1.
“The match started out OK with us having some chance, but the issues impacting us most of this year surfaced, and we were down 3-1 due to some miscues on defense,” coach Scott Meier said. “The girls tried to build some possession in the second half, but we conceded three additional goals. (This was not) the result we were hoping for.”
The Hastings goal was scored by Sam Schorzman.
“It was a great effort and shot,” Meier said.
Hastings lost to Park on Sept. 26, 5-0.
“Park is solid this year and played a strong game,” Meier said. “They have depth throughout their lineup and their defense is very good. We were not able to build much possession during the match due to the aggressive pressing by their midfielders; and their defense kept our forwards at bay.
“The girls kept fighting, but this is always a tough match for us as it is against a close rival and a program with consistent strength.”
Vs Rochester Mayo
Hastings lost to Rochester Mayo on Sept. 28 in a non-conference match, 8-1.
“This match started out OK for both sides during the initial 20 minutes, but it went in the favor of Rochester Mayo thereafter for the most part,” Meier said. “We lost control of this match with about 20 minutes to go, when some defensive miscues provided opportunities for Mayo to score five goals in the latter second half.”
Schorzman recorded the Hastings goal.
“She again provided a spark for us with a strong effort to score our goal on a nice shot,” Meier said. “She has been staying after it this season for us and I have been pleased with her play.”
Hastings is without the services of forward Elle Cooper the rest of the way.
“We have missed the presence of Elle as our second forward since losing her to surgery for removing an appendix on Sept. 20,” Meier said. “Elle is another for us who really stays after it the entire match.”
Meier said Maria Rother and Sami Claussen had strong games for the Raiders.
“They had good games for us and kept battling throughout the match,” he said.
Vs East Ridge
Hastings lost to East Ridge on Sept. 17, 4-0.
“The match was going OK during the first half and we were down 2-0 at half,” Meier said. “Our positioning was better and our defense was showing better form. The one item holding our possession back was our first touch on the ball, which put us on our heels too much as East Ridge gained the ball. The second half played itself out like the first half in most categories, but I was happy to see our overall play and form improving from prior games. “We lost 4-0 as East Ridge broke us down defensively on several attacks and our decisions were not the best. Our girls competed the entire match versus East Ridge. We had better communication, had some attacking chances and those are items to build on. The areas that need to be improved upon are the mistakes in judgment on our defensive side of the ball, getting first to the ball more and settling the ball down for possession.”
Hastings lost to Woodbury on Sept. 20, 5-0.
“The match started well for us as we played with Woodbury for the first half despite being down 3-0,” Meier said. “We were moving the ball at times and having a sense of attack at times. We missed a few nice chances in the first half. Our defense was doing OK, but we have a few instances where positioning and judgment led to an attack by Woodbury, which they scored on.
“Casey Webber got injured late in the first half and was a blow to our defensive back unit, as she has been a consistent player for us all year. The second half began how the first half went, but Woodbury notched a goal about 12-14 minutes in and then got another goal later in the half.”
Meier said Sarah Howd had a strong game on defense.
“She has been a strong performer all season,” Meier said.
Cooper had a good game, too.
“She had a strong game for us as a forward in creating some close chances through persistent hard work,” Meier said.