Republic’s soccer team got plenty of chances to score at Carl Junction, but couldn’t finish them. The Bulldogs got fewer looks at the goal, but made one of them count in a 1-0 win Tuesday.
(Photo gallery below.)
The only score of the night came in the 50th minute, when Carl Junction pounded the ball into the net from about 25 yards out, crossing from right to left in front of a lunging Drake Lightfoot to take the lead.
Republic threatened several times down the stretch, including multiple shots in the final two minutes, but couldn’t get the ball in the goal. It was a recurring theme for the Tigers, who have struggled to score all year, but especially since losing Marco Donjuan to injury.
“We did a nice job controlling the ball. I thought we looked really good out there. We controlled the game and gave ourselves good opportunities, but it’s the same thing since Marco went out,” said coach Kevin Hauck. “Who’s going to be our finisher? And we just haven’t had the opportunity of someone stepping up and making those big goals for us late in the game.
“I told the guys, ‘That’s what happens when you keep teams in the game. All it takes is one opportunity, and [Carl Junction] got their one chance and they made it count.”
Republic was 5-5 at one point, and now is 6-11. But Hauck said he remains confident the Tigers can do some damage in the post-season when considering all their close losses this year.
“Think about all the games throughout the year that we’ve lost by one goal. If we’re on the right side of those games instead of the wrong side, our record is a lot different,” he said. “When we get into the playoffs, we know we’re going to play these teams close, and all it takes is one chance. So if we can take advantage of our one chance … that’s presented to us… then we could put ourselves on the right side.”
Republic will host Bolivar Thursday and will celebrate Senior Night.