Despite a 6-0 win over visiting Ketchikan in the regular-season finale on Thursday, there is plenty of work to be done for the Juneau-Douglas High School girls soccer team.
The Crimson Bears (9-4-2) will have a week of practice to work on their game before flying to Anchorage for the state tournament. JDHS will open play in the state tournament on May 31.
"We definitely are going to need the extra week of practice," JDHS co-coach Colin Barton said. "This was good for us to put it together in a game situation against another team, but we're going to need all this time. Especially to get the forwards, who are a new combination, the time to play together and get to know each other."
In Thursday's win on senior night, Juneau-Douglas controlled the game from the opening whistle.
The Crimson Bears' defense remained strong and unified, allowing just one shot on goal in the win. JDHS also gave up one shot in Wednesday's 9-0 win over the Kings.
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"The last two games we were really good, and going to state we're in good standing," JDHS midfielder Jessica Waste said. "These games picked our confidence up and I think we'll do real well."
Against the Kings, JDHS used all parts of the field and all of its players in the win. The Bears dictated play with crisp passing in the midfield and strong crosses from the wings.
"Our goal was possession yesterday and today," Waste said. "We worked on possession and keeping our communication up so that helped our confidence."
JDHS didn't break through until the 21st minute when striker Margaret Sekona beat Ketchikan's goalkeeper on a breakaway for the first goal. Kirsten Jorgensen picked up the assist.
Eight minutes later, Sekona scored her second goal on a beautiful give-and-go with Carly Lehnhart. After receiving the ball about 10 yards from the goal, Sekona played it back to Lehnhart, who in turn gave it back to the prolific forward. Sekona coolly gave JDHS a 2-0 lead.
Sekona completed her hat trick in the 31st minute when she volleyed a perfect cross from Annika Ord into the goal.
She added a fourth goal in the 47th minute off Waste's assist.
While Sekona dazzled the crowd with her goal-scoring prowess, Barton would like to see others get in on the act.
"Unfortunately we are a little too reliant on her," Barton said. "I think the other players are very reliant on her. When she gets going, the others get going. As you can see in the first half, we were very slow until she got going. That is something we need address. It shouldn't be that way, but it is."
Waste picked up her second assist in the 60th minute when she fed Wendy Calderwood for a goal.
Lehnhart ended the day's scoring with an unassisted tally in the 79th minute.
Tim Nichols, sports editor, can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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