Jasper girls fall to Mater DeiSeptember 1, 2021
By COREY STOLZENBACH
Editor's note: Due to a lack of time and space, this story is online only.
JASPER - Jasper took a 5-0 loss to Southern Indiana Athletic Conference rival Evansville Mater Dei Wednesday evening, but Jasper coach Michael Donato couldn't be upset in the loss to the team ranked No. 2 in Class 2A by the Indiana Soccer Coaches Associaton.
"The girls played really well, they did," Donato said. "I mean, compared to last year's showing against them - last year was not very pretty at all. (There was a) lot of good stuff out there. The girls responded nicely to high pressure, especially defensively. The girls held their own, they really did."
Mater Dei orchestrated its first goal off a ball from junior Este Bonnell at the 28:26 point in the first half of the game. Jasper (2-5, 1-4) trailed, 1-0, but Mater Dei was far from done in this All-Wildcats matchup.
Jasper had some close calls with the ball almost going in, but junior Jasmin Mehringer kicked a ball away from the net that prevented the second goal of the game at approximately the 14:15 point. Donato talked about telling Mehringer to stay focused in the goal channel, and he hailed her play Wednesday evening.
This soon changed, however, when freshman Ella Hamilton booted a high ball that sailed over Hubster's head to give Mater Dei an insurance goal with 10:46 to go in the opening half.
"It was just a timing issue is all that it was," he said.
Mater Dei continued to attack at the start of the second half, forcing Jasper onto defense early and striking within the first minute. Junior Tess Freeman shot one to the left side that accounted for Mater Dei's third goal of the game with 39:19 to go in the game. Jasper trailed, 3-0, and Mater Dei continued to get more opportunities on the net afterward.
Two more goals came in the game by Mater Dei junior Molly Swallows and senior Lexi Kassenbrock, with Kassenbrock's score coming in the final 20 seconds of play. Jasper did not have a whole lot of opportunities on offense, but sophomore Lilly Rasche and junior Merin Buck did get some shots on goal later on in the second half.
"A lot of the opportunities we got ended up being balls played more long into the space," Donato said. "A lot of the reason we were failing getting forward is because we were missing our second pass in the middle third. We'd get a nice, clean pass out the feet, coming out of the back. But then that second pass typically was off a little bit and ended up going to the other team."
Jasper now has the rest of the week off from games, and is scheduled to return to action Sept. 7 at home against Princeton.
"The extra recovery is nice for us," he said. "We have such a thin bench. We only have four players we're rotating in, and playing games like this, high competition - it wears them down. They always need at least one full day of really kind of easy practice, and so the longer weekend is actually nice - give them a chance to recoup."
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