After spending a couple hours battling Dodge City in cold and extremely windy conditions, Savannah Schneider made sure the Hays High girls soccer team had something to show for it.
Schneider scored the game-winning goal in the second overtime period to give the Indians a 1-0 win over Dodge City in their Western Athletic Conference opener on Tuesday at Hays High Field.
With the temperature in the 40s and wind gusts of about 25 to 30 miles an hour, Schneider said it was a good sign to see the Indians persevere.
"Man, it's just really windy and it's cold and I knew it was a really tough game," Schneider said. "We all knew that we had to score if we really wanted to win this and start our WAC season off good.
"We really tried to outwork the defense, and I think that's what helped us at the end."
With the wind at the Indians' backs, Schneider scored the golden goal about three minutes into the second overtime off an assist from Hannah McGuire. Schneider chased down the loose ball in the box from the left side before beating the Dodge City keeper to help Hays improve to 3-2.
"I saw a team step up and do their responsibilities individually and just play tough," Hays coach Silas Hibbs said. "It was a team win from start to finish. Sav did a great job doing her responsbility on the back side and following to get the game winner."
Scoring opportunities were scarce for both teams, but the Indians managed to get a few shots on goal against the Red Demons throughout the game before Schneider broke through for her fourth goal of the season.
"The Western Kansas wind is a trick for everybody," Hibbs said.
Schneider said being able to persist and find the goal will be a good confidence boost moving forward.
"As a team, we feel so strong now because we overcame such cold weather and a difficult team to pull out a win" Schneider said.
"It's very encouraging," Hibbs said. "The girls played so tough today."
Isabel Robben notched the shutout in goal for the Indians.
Hays will play at Liberal on Thursday.