Four Crimson Bears scored in Juneau-Douglas High School girls soccer team’s ninth shutout of the season on Monday night against Thunder Mountain High School.
Goals by juniors Michaela Bentley, McKenzie Dimond, Malia Miller and sophomore Asianna Mazon made it 4-0 JDHS (9-1-1) when it was over.
It was 0-0 for over half the game though, as TMHS (4-4-1) — despite coming off a taxing three-game road trip—came out aggressive.
The Falcons’ intensity slowly waned in the second half though, and the Crimson Bears took advantage.
“We always turn it around for the second half when we figure things out,” JDHS junior Nicole Mannix said. “So I think we just decided that we needed to step it up and work harder because they were going at it.”
Bentley scored two minutes into the second half on a penalty kick and Miller scored on a free kick about 10 minutes later.
“You could see the fatigue from the girls and they just started wearing out,” TMHS coach John Newell said.
TMHS defeated Palmer, Kenai and Redington in the days leading up to the game, shutting out their opponents by a combined 10-0.
Freshmen Isabella Hanna and Ellie Knapp, sophomore Ferlyn Dimasaca and seniors Cierra McCain and Azure Briggs all scored in the road matches.
JDHS is a different beast though, according to Newell, and he complimented the way the Crimson Bears played in the second half.
“I’ve coached most of those girls at one point or another and I absolutely loved the way they settled down in the second half and started playing the ball around instead of just playing long balls,” Newell said. “They started looking like the team they should be.”
Mannix and fellow juniors Erica Hurtte and Brianna Jokerst have transformed into a defensive juggernaut this year. It showed in this game with TMHS only able to make three shots.
“Brianna usually plays offense and this is her first year playing defense ever and she’s doing really good, she’s adjusted since the beginning of the year,” Mannix said. “And Erica, this is one of her first years playing soccer competitively and she’s doing really well, too. … We all work together. It doesn’t just take two people, it’s all of us.”
With three conference games left, the Crimson Bears are already a lock to make the state tournament.
JDHS plays in its final home game next on Tuesday, May 15 against TMHS.
TMHS plays Thursday and Friday at 6:45 p.m. against Ketchikan at TMHS.
• Contact sports reporter Nolin Ainsworth at 523-2272 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Empire Sports on Twitter at @akempiresports.