The Juneau-Douglas High School boys and girls soccer teams are following a simple plan for success on this week's road trip: Don't let the other team score.
The Crimson Bear girls blanked West Anchorage 4-0 on Thursday, and the Juneau boys beat Homer 4-0 as both squads remained undefeated this season.
With each team having played two of their three games on the trip, neither Juneau squad has allowed a goal. Both Crimson Bear teams shut out Wasilla on Wednesday.
On Thursday, senior Greta Thibodeau scored two goals and added an assist as the Juneau girls (7-0-0) beat West at Anchorage Football Stadium. The Eagles played a physical game against the Crimson Bears.
"It was good for us to get knocked around a little bit and know we can still play at this level," said Thibodeau, who opened the scoring with a goal in the 17th minute off an assist from freshman Sarah Christianson.
But with the wind against them and West controlling the midfield for much of the opening 40 minutes, Juneau was unable to score again before halftime.
"This was definitely the best team we've played," Juneau co-coach Sandi Wagner said. "We were a little sluggish (in the first half), but we were able to ... hold our own. And in the second half, the kids played tough and picked our game up."
In the 50th minute - the 10th minute of the second half - Thibodeau took a pass from junior Theresa Badilla, broke away and beat a West defender one-on-one for a goal.
Four minutes later, Thibodeau and Badilla combined for another score. Senior Tasha McKoy made a throw-in that Thibodeau headed to Badilla, and Badilla headed the ball into the net.
In the 66th minute, senior Alida Bus scored by heading in a rebound of her own shot.
Sophomore Gretchen Dierking, playing defensive midfield, helped keep West's offense in check, while senior goalkeeper Julie Heard faced her toughest test of the season but preserved the shutout.
The Juneau girls play Homer this afternoon at Skyview High School in Soldotna to end the road trip.
The Juneau boys made the three-hour drive from Anchorage to Soldotna on Thursday to play the Mariners. Like the girls, they started a bit slow.
"The boys coasted a bit and were a little selfish (in the first half), but we got that squared up in the second half and played at a higher level," Juneau coach Gary Lehnhart said.
Sophomore Kabil Seesan didn't start, but entered in the eighth minute and quickly tallied the game's first goal off an assist from senior Nathan Schroeder.
Seesan won the team's lunchbox award. He and junior Nick Ellenbecker helped fill in at midfield while senior Alex Newton sat out to recover from a leg injury sustained in Wednesday's game.
In the 33rd minute, sophomore Jamaal Bailey scored off the rebound of a shot by senior Cameron Mitchell.
In the 43rd minute - the third minute of the second half - Schroeder scored off a throw-in by junior Ian Brinkman. Senior Kiel Urata closed out the scoring by converting a penalty kick in the 63rd minute after a Homer defender pulled down Seesan in the box.
The Juneau boys (10-0-1) close out the road trip this afternoon with a game against Chugiak at Anchorage Football Stadium.
Jeff Helminiak of the Peninsula Clarion contributed to this report.
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