HARLAN – In their final regular season road game of the year, the Panther boys soccer team struggled against Harlan, falling 6-0.
The Panthers have run into a string of quality opponents and the Cyclones met that same standard, entering the contest with a 10-6 record.
While head coach Jerry Hartman admitted there were positives to be found from Monday’s game, he’s hoping the Panthers can get their mojo back as they head into their final regular season contest.
“We made a couple mental mistakes early in the game and we never recovered from it,” said Hartman. “We tried so many different combinations of things just to find something that would work, but we just couldn’t never could get in sync.”
Harlan led just 2-0 after the first half, but poured it on in the second half, adding four more scores.
A team that was mentally resilient to start the season, Hartman is now looking for Creston to re-find that same mental toughness.
“The guys have got to figure out how to stop making simple mistakes that we should not be making this far into the season,” said Hartman. “For some reason we are making those mistakes now. So we just need to figure out a way to rectify that.
“We have to believe. ... We have to get our swag back,” said Hartman. “We have to do the little things right. ... I honestly think we are a much better team than we were earlier in the season we are just making little mistakes that we can not afford to make.”
Creston’s last four losses haven’t been to easy opponents as the combined records of the last four opponents is 36-21.
The loss moves the Panthers back to .500 with a 7-7 record and one game left to go before opening up the postseason against East Sac County May 20 at 5 p.m. in Nevada.
UP NEXT – Creston will close out the season at home Thursday with one more Hawkeye 10 foe in Glenwood (6-9), starting at 5 p.m.
Harlan 6, Creston 0
Creston (0) —Shots (on goal) — 11 (2 on goal). Individual shots (on goal)— Hunter Fry 1 (0), Matt Borha 1 (0), Jade Conley 1 (0), Brodie Wallace 1 (0), Spencer Lane 1 (0), Brance Baker 2 (0), Clayton Stafford 3 (1), Lee Normandeau 1 (1). Keeper saves — Payton Pryor 11, Derek Paup 5. Fouls — N/A.
Harlan (6) — Goals – Kyle Knudson (3’), Jordan Fink (21’), Cole Kramer (46’), Ashton Lyon (64’), Michael Heithoff (65’), Creston own goal (68’). Shots (on goal) — 19 (15). Individual shots (on goal) – Kramer 7 (6), Lyon 2 (2), Dalton Gross 2 (1), Fink 3 (1), Knudson 3 (3), Heithoff 2 (2). Saves — Konner Leinen 2. Fouls — N/A.