The Thunder Mountain boys’ soccer team went north over the weekend for the first Anchorage trip in the program’s history.
It proved difficult for the Falcons as they went 0-3 against Palmer, Eagle River and East Anchorage, losing 4-0, 2-1 and 1-0, respectively. But TMHS coach Ry Walters said it was the type of experience his young side needed.
“It’s always good to go play in different regions to see what others are doing all over the state,” he said.
The Falcons opened the three-game swing against Palmer in a game Walters said wasn’t his team’s best. He said it’s his responsibility as coach to make sure his side is ready to play.
“We didn’t bring it. But we changed that, focused and got back to playing our game,” Walters said. “We made those two teams play our game, but they beat us.”
Thunder Mountain responded on Friday with what Walters called his team’s best performance to date. The Falcons held the lead much of the way before falling late to Eagle River.
“It was the first time our guys had to feel that heartbreak of really feeling like they were going to come away with the win, and then not,” Walters said. “That’s a great experience in and of itself.”
Sophomore Brandon Monges scored the lone goal of the day for the Falcons off an assist from Ojyo Yo, and Walters said TMHS really controlled the pace of play on Friday.
“We outworked them, outplayed them and outshot them, but (Eagle River) had two pieces of individual brilliance that took over the game,” he said. “Sometimes that’s what it takes.”
The Falcons ended the trip with a 1-0 loss to East, but Walters said he was pleased overall with the road trip despite the three losses.
“We’re at the point where we’re growing every game, and it almost seems like after every game I’m saying that was the best game to date,” he said. “That’s truly all you can ask.”
In some bad news from the trip, Walters said it is likely Yo will miss the remainder of the season with an apparent broken ankle.
Thunder Mountain (1-11-1) will play Juneau-Douglas at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday at Adair-Kennedy Memorial Park.