It was a tough afternoon for the Soldotna Stars on Thursday at Adair-Kennedy Field in Juneau as the No. 3 seed in the state soccer championships fell to the Dimond Lynx 3-1.
Soldotna's performance fell short of coach Mike Tovoli's expectations.
"I think my girls came out very timid and didn't know what to do," he said. "I think the score could have been 5-0 in that first 20 minutes very easily."
Dimond got the scoring started in the 19th minute on an Alexis Rogers goal, and followed it up with another score in the 25th minute from Adrianna Liggon.
Colleen Fairchild capped the scoring for the Lynx, but Soldotna's T'essa Tovoli finished a nice run in the final minutes to get the Stars on the board.
Despite the loss, Tovoli said he was happy that his team did not give in to the competition.
"I did like that we persevered and came back and at least competed. For some reason, we came out flat and came out scared, and we didn't check to the ball and do the things that we know how to do," he said. "I don't know what to contribute that to, but it's something that happened, and hopefully we've learned from it and can come out and have a strong performance tomorrow."
Even down 3-0 late in the game, the Stars made it a point to continue to work hard in order to get a goal in the waning moments. Tovoli said that is a positive aspect the team can take into today's game against Wasilla at 3 p.m. at Thunder Mountain High School.
"We didn't stop or give up. We still pressured them and finally got one in at the end of the game, which is something we can build on," he said. "At least we didn't shut down. That's a huge thing. I think the heat and conditioning were part of the issue, but we can make excuses all day long.
"The bottom line is you got to come out and perform no matter what it is and compete at the highest level."
The Stars (11-2-1) will look to take the season series against the Warriors (14-4-0) as each team won once in their two previous regular-season meetings.
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