Friday, September 7, 2012

2-2 tie in first soccer clash for WRHS, Jerome

Hailey boys rally from 2-0 down in Great Basin

Express Staff Writer

    Two teams with legitimate State 4A tournament aspirations—the Wood River Wolverines and Jerome Tigers—clashed for the first time Tuesday and played to a 2-2 boys’ soccer draw at Jerome.
    It seemed a better outcome for the visiting Wolverines of coach Luis Monjaras because the Hailey boys rallied from a 2-0 first-half deficit on goals by sophomore Desmond Porth and junior Andrew Graves.
    “Coming from behind and tying Jerome on their field almost seems like a win to us,” said fourth-year coach Monjaras. “We had only beaten Jerome one time out of the last four visits we’ve made there.”
    Of course that one time was big—a 2-1 win in the Great Basin Conference championship game in October 2010 that gave Monjaras’ Wolverines their first 4A district title over three-time defending champ Jerome.
    Tuesday afternoon, unbeaten Jerome (4-0-2, 2-0-1 league) jumped ahead 2-0 on goals in the 18th and 23rd minutes and looked like the team that had beaten Twin Falls 3-0 and Canyon Ridge 7-1 in its first two league encounters. Jerome goals came after a corner kick and on a breakaway.
    Wood River (2-0-3, 2-0-1), having entered with a four-game, 320-minute scoreless streak, played without star senior defender Zack Freeman, who suffered a concussion in a 1-0 road win over Canyon Ridge on Aug. 30.
    The visitors got on the board when Porth tallied his first varsity goal in the 34th minute on a pass from junior Zac Miczulski. Graves buried a 25-yard direct kick for his first goal of the season in the 56th minute and the eventual equalizer.
    Wood River’s defense, fortified by the addition of junior Alberto Salinas in place of Freeman, kept Jerome’s attacking offense scoreless in the final 57 minutes when junior goalkeeper Max Mauldin stopped a late Tiger breakaway.
    “Both teams had great opportunities,” said Monjaras.
    “I’d say Jerome controlled about 60 percent of the game. They’re a great team that controls the ball on the ground and uses the width well. Jerome has a great offensive line. We have a great defensive line,” he added.
    Wood River leads the 15-year, 29-game series 15-12-2, but keep in mind that the Wolverines dominated with a 11-0 record from 1997-2006. Since, Jerome owns a 12-3-2 mark.
    The Wolverine boys played at home Thursday against Minico (3-2-1, 2-1-0) and entertain Twin Falls (1-3-2, 0-2-1) on Tuesday, Sept. 11. The home rematch with Jerome is Sept. 20 during Homecoming Week.

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