Learning from the loss: Gering, Scottsbluff finding good in season’s end
     2014-05-15      By Kaitlyn Krzyzanowski    kaitlynk@geringcitizen.com
Photo courtesy of Brian Copsey - Gering sophomore Noemi Amaro (No. 3) preps for a kick during the district championship game against Holdrege on May 8. Teammate Bulldogs senior Shelton Blanco (No. 7) and sophomores Morgan Wallace (No. 4) and Katie Martindale (No. 19) eye the play. The Bulldogs ended their season with a 3-2 loss in double overtime. 
Gering girls’ soccer faces a tough loss 3-2 in double overtime against Holdrege during the district championship held in Holdrege on May 8.

Early in the game both Hadley Kirk and Morgan Smith were each able to score a goal, but ended up falling short with Holdrege’s three goals later.

Even though the season came to a disappointing end, the Bulldogs still ended up 8-10. With five returning players from last year and plenty of new faces on the team, head coach Lisa Freeburg was very happy with how far the team made it in their season. These girls held their own throughout the entire year and came together as a group.

“One of our goals this season was to get to the district tournament and the team was very excited to be playing in it. The loss was a bit hard but overall everything was a positive process and the girls learned a lot,” Freeburg said.

Freeburg has been very proud of her girls all season, and even with the district championship loss, she feels as though they have accomplished a lot.

“Since day one to the end of the season, the girls really progressed and there was some definite improvement from everyone,” Freeburg said.

With that improvement comes success and Freeburg claims that it wouldn’t have been possible without the leadership from her four seniors this year who really stood out from the crowd. This includes Shelton Blanco, Kelsea Prieels, Laettner Blanco, and CeCelia Gutierrez.

“The leaders in the group this year were my four seniors. They really stepped up to the challenge this year and didn’t let any obstacles get in their way,” Freeburg said.

At the end of every season, it’s always good to look at what has been accomplished and what can be looked forward to for next year which is exactly what Freeburg and her returning players plan to do.

“Next year will definitely be exciting. I have majority of the team returning and now they will all have at least one year of varsity experience under their belt. That should help a lot,” Freeburg said.

Scottsbluff boys also ended their season on May 10 with a loss during the sub-state tournament to Hastings 3-1.

Hastings Tigers were quick to score three goals on the Bearcats in the first half of the game. Later, however, Mitchell Miles, with an assist by BlaKE Wills, ended up scoring one back on the Tigers in the 38th. Unfortunately, they weren’t able to score a couple more to keep the game going and the Bearcat’s season came to an end.

Head coach Nate Rock is not letting any disappointment befall onto his players from the loss. With a young team this year and only graduating three starters, Rock is excited for next season.

“Overall, I’m pretty happy with how this season went. My strategies going into this year were to just create good team chemistry as well as play some simple soccer. I feel like we accomplished both of those,” Rock said.

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