The Homer boys soccer team scored three consecutive goals to erase an early deficit in a 3-1 win over Kenai Central at Homer on Saturday in Northern Lights Conference Southern Division action.
The Kardinals fall to 1-2-0 in the division and overall, while the Mariners improve to 2-0 overall and 1-0 in the division.
"It was quite a battle today," Homer coach Warren Waldorf said. "I was proud of the kids, to come back and get a draw at halftime and then win it in the end."
Avery Palchikoff scored in the 17th minute to give the Kards the lead, but Robin Glosser tallied the equalizer in the 38th minute.
Palchikoff missed a penalty kick in the 57th minute, opening the door for Homer. Kyle Wisner put the Mariners ahead in the 70th minute, and Carson Duggar added a goal in extra time.
Kenai Central coach David Landry credited Homer, but said the goals the Mariners scored could have been prevented.
"I was very disappointed in the goalkeeping today," Landry said, adding his squad was short-handed. "There were guys missing, but that's no excuse for what I consider soft goals, the sort of goals that deflate a team in a heartbeat."
Landy said Josh McKee had a good game at center defense, while freshman Fox Michaud played well at outside midfield. Jace Daniels, who started at outside defense, also made solid contributions, the coach added.
"They are a very good-looking side," Landry said of Homer. "It was well deserved. We had our chances."
Meanwhile, the Mariners will prepare for a busy week as they visit Skyview at 6 p.m. Tuesday before facing Nikiski, Colony and Palmer on consecutive days beginning Thursday.
Waldorf said every game is important, but the team can't look too far ahead.
"We're just going to take it one game at a time," he said. "We're going to keep our fingers crossed that we don't sustain any injuries because that would change everything."
Kenai Central girls 2, Homer 0
The Kardinals received two goals from Vanessa Anderson in picking up a Northern Lights Conference Southern Division victory over the host Mariners on Saturday.
Anderson's tallies came in the 20th and 50th minutes as the Kardinals continued to put in dominant defensive efforts. The team is now 2-0-1 in the division and overall, and coach Dan Verkuilen estimates his squad has allowed a total of 10 shots on goal all year. The Mariners are 0-1 and 0-2.
In the 20th minute, Anderson scored unassisted. She put a 25-yard shot from the left side into the right corner.
Later, Katherine O'Reilly started the scoring play by passing up the left wing to Jen Calhoun. Calhoun crossed to Anderson, who put the ball away.
Verkuilen said Shelby Toombs did a nice job gathering and distributing the balls on defense. The coach also said Taylor Ostrander filled in solidly for Allie McGahan at center midfield. McGahan missed the game due to illness.
While Verkuilen continues to be pleased with his team's passing and defense, he said the Kardinals have to finish more opportunities. He said Homer's goalie and wings on defense did a good job of keeping his squad from scoring more.
"It was a really good team effort," he said. "We played a lot of young players and they all had a good game."
Dimond girls 3, Soldotna 1
The defending Class 4A state champions defeated Soldotna with two goals in the second half, breaking a 1-1 tie at Dimond on Friday in nonconference action.
Kaili Sholin scored the lone goal for the Stars.
"I'm proud of the effort we gave," SoHi coach Mike Tovoli said. "It was a tough, physical game and it was played at a very high level."
South boys 6, Soldotna 0
The Stars were overwhelmed on the road against South. SoHi faced Bartlett on Saturday, but results from that match were unavailable at press time.
Soldotna girls 7, Bartlett 0
The Stars received goals from Sholin, Julie Litchfield, T'essa Tovoli, Kendra Currier, Christina Tachick and Phoebe Napolitano for an easy nonconference win on the road Saturday. Kaitlyn Van Meter had three assists.
SoHi (3-1-0) scored in the third minute, but Tovoli said the squad failed to sustain its intensity the entire game.
"My biggest complaint is we got lackadasical again," he said. "We have to continue playing at a high level no matter who we are playing against or what the score is."
The Stars host Skyview at 3:30 p.m. Monday.
Colony boys 6, Nikiski 1
Sam Taylor scored a goal for the Bulldogs, but it was not nearly enough as the Knights cruised at home on Friday.
Wasilla boys 5, Nikiski 0
The Warriors earned a shutout on their home field on Saturday.
Nikiski coach Jim Coburn said the Bulldogs received solid efforts from goalkeeper Kaden Spurgeon and defender Kovy Harbick. Coburn said he played a lot of swing players.
"We need to focus on our conference schedule," Coburn said. "The games up here are just to help us get better. Overall we are a little disappointed, but we're looking forward to playing our conference schedule."
Nikiski visits Soldotna at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday.
Colony girls 4, Nikiski 0
After an hour-long wait for the referees to arrive, the Knights pitched a shutout on their home field against the Bulldogs.
"It could have gone better," Nikiski coach Mandy Adair said.
Wasilla girls 5, Nikiski 0
The Warriors blanked the Bulldogs at Wasilla on Saturday.
Despite the score, Adair praised the effort of sophomore forward Morgan Tschida, who the coach said had her best game this season.
The Bulldogs visit Soldotna at 3:30 p.m. Tuesday.
"We're looking forward to getting home and playing well," Adair said of the SoHi game. "It's a win-win. If we lose, it's kind of what people expect, but if we play well, it's a really great thing for the girls."
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