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Hays High drops another close match late

Published on -10/10/2012, 10:27 AM

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By KLINT SPILLER

kspiller@dailynews.net

The Hays High School boys' soccer team experienced deja vu Tuesday against Garden City.

Hays High had a 1-0 advantage for more than 70 minutes before Garden City added the tying and game-winning goals in the waning moments of the match to defeat the Indians 2-1 at HHS Field.

It was the fifth time this season a team has delivered the game-winning or tying goal in the final 10 minutes of the match against Hays High (5-7-2, 3-4-1 WAC).

"We've had a couple of those this year where we have the goal and somebody comes in and takes it away from us," said senior outside midfielder Cody Brown. "It's heartbreaking."

The WAC match was meaningless toward the league standings. Garden City (11-2, 7-1 WAC) had clinched the league title Thursday against Great Bend.

However, the match could have an impact on regional seedings.

"Seeding for regionals is important," Hays High coach Chris Michaelis said. "... It will be a little more difficult now for us to have home field in the playoffs."

It also was senior night for Hays High, and the Indians' six seniors left the field on a down note.

"It was a tough one," Brown said. "We had it, but it was a heartbreaker to see (them come back)."

The game featured a strong north-south wind, and Garden City played with the wind at its back in the first half.

Hays High jumped ahead in the fourth minute when junior forward Shawn Herrman took the ball from near midfield and out ran Garden City's defense, chipping the ball above senior goalkeeper Carlos Luquin's head to put the Indians up 1-0.

The Buffaloes attempted to rally and use the wind in their favor, taking long shots, but many of their shots were off or went directly to Hays High senior goalkeeper Josh Johnson.

"I think they had maybe half the shots we had, but we just didn't make them," Garden City head coach Joaquin Padilla said.

Garden City kept plugging away in the second half, but Hays High denied the Buffaloes' attack again and again.

"Like most teams and like ourselves, they are right-foot dominant," Michaelis said. "We knew they would take it to their left and cut it back to the right. We told our guys to be patient and make them go to their left and not dive in and stab at the ball."

Surprisingly, the Buffaloes actually created better chances playing against the wind, using its fluid passes to get behind Hays High's defense.

Finally Garden City broke through as Buffalo sophomore Erik Barragan received a flick pass from senior Joel Sanchez, and Barragan, attacking from the left of goal, buried his shot to the right of the goalkeeper in the 73rd minute to tie it.

Two minutes later, Barragan did it again, but this time, he collected his own rebound and then kicked it to the right of the goalkeeper.

Garden City dominated the possession and out shot Hays High 22 to 9 in the match, so it was just a matter of time before the Buffaloes got on the scoreboard. Unfortunately for Hays High, that time came about eight minutes sooner than the Indians would have liked.

Johnson finished with 11 saves, while Luquin had six.

The Indians will travel Thursday to face Wichita-Bishop Carroll, ranked No. 5 in Class 5A in the most recent coaches' poll. Game time is 5 p.m.

"We've played some really tough competition and been in almost every game that we've played this year," Michaelis said.

"Maybe we haven't had some luck on our side from time to time, but I believe good things are going to happen with this group of kids as long as we continue to work hard and stay positive."

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