The Juneau-Douglas High School boy’s soccer team started the season scoring nine goals in an 8-1 win on the pitch at Sitka.
The “own” goal came on a last second throw in by Sitka in the final seconds of the second half on a header against the Crimson Bears’ freshman goalie Hunter Pegus by another teammate.
“Hunter played the whole game in goal,” JDHS coach Gary Lehnhart said. “That is a lot of pressure for a young player.”
The Crimson Bears are playing with a lot of youth this season but still had 13 shots on goal in the first half.
“We missed a lot of opportunities early,” Lehnhart said.
The first goal scored came at the five-minute mark as former Thunder Mountain Falcons’ player Ryan Hoover took a pass from Antonio Hafferty and nestled it in the corner. The two sophomores would hook up again at the 12-minute mark of the second half.
Hafferty scored at the 14-minute of the first half on an assist by Justin Bellagh.
That was followed by a goal by freshman Oswaldo Magallanes.
“It was a beautiful goal,” Lehnhart said. “He dribbled through four or five defenders and scored.”
The Crimson Bears scored five in the second half.
Along with the Hoover/Hafferty hook up, goals came from Bellagh (unassisted) in the second minute, Nick Stewart unassisted, Ben Scudder on an assist from Ashu Tingley, and then Tingley scored five minutes after with an assist by Barclay Weyhrauch.
“We have a lot of new faces,” Lehnhart said. “We knew we were going to be young and that we have a long way to go but we are off to a pretty good start.”
Gatorade Player of the Year nominee Jackson Lehnhart did not make the trip as he is playing baseball with JDHS in Arizona.
Senior Stuart Thurston was the leading presence on the pitch for the Crimson Bears and will be relied on, along with Lehnhart, to provide the veteran leadership for the youth movement on the team. The Crimson Bears suffered a setback earlier in the year when senior Tommy Thompson suffered an ACL injury and will be lost for the season.
“We cannot replace what he meant to the team,” Lehnhart said.
The Crimson Bears play Sitka again today and will battle at Thunder Mountain on Monday at 6 p.m.