History was made on a 50- by 100-yard field, opposite a cornfield off County Road 875 East, in Jackson County on Wednesday.
The Trinity Lutheran girls soccer team took the field, sporting new white-washed jerseys, for the first time in the school’s history.
Despite dropping their inaugural game to Providence 10-0, the Cougars left the field with smiles on their faces.
Story continues below gallery
For the Cougars it wasn’t the final result, but the process.
“They had good attitudes, never gave up and didn’t get down,” Cougars coach Jeff Nolting said. “They saw some good stuff playing Providence. It will help build towards the future. Providence is a state-ranked team, they won state a few years back. It’s a top-notch program. The girls kept their composure and it speaks of our kids.
“The girls were extremely positive. They had fun and learned a lot. That’s what I’m looking for, we will get better every day and every game.”
The Cougars kept the game scoreless through the first 12 minutes of play.
Five minutes into play, junior goalkeeper Hailley Peters deflected a penalty shot resulting from a handball in the box.
The Pioneers’ Mikaila Heavrin notched her team’s first goal with 28:14 on the clock in the first half off a strike from just outside the 18-yards box.
At 27:39, the Pioneers struck again as Emma Roesner netted a ball from the top of the upper box.
Two more Pioneers goals gave the away team a 4-0 lead at halftime. In the first half, Peters recorded a gargantuan 20 saves.
The second half saw the Pioneers net a pair of goals early, at the 33:15 and 31:42 minutes marks.
By the final whistle, the Pioneers amassed the double-digit win. At the end of it all, Peters totaled 35 saves on 45 shots on goal.
“A lot of it for (Peters) was instinct and athleticism,” Nolting said. “I can’t ever recall 35 saves in a game I’ve coached. They were quality. Her footwork and positioning was (correct) in the box. For only working with her a short period of time, I can’t say enough about our keeper.”
Most of the game, the Cougars played on defense, as they struggled to maintain possession on the attacking end of the field.
The Cougars finished with just one shot on goal in the game.
“We need to get more shots on goal and attack,” Nolting said. “I want to see them stay in a defensive shape on the field, I think that’s from inexperience and excitement. I just want to see little improvements every game.”
Nolting said he that he thought the defense had high points in the game.
“They did well working on passing to space and creating combinations of passes,” he said. “I thought the defense in the middle did a good job pressuring the ball to stop counterattacks and runs.”
The Cougars were without sophomore Maddie Roark, as she was injured in warm ups.
Roark score five goals and totaled six assists, while starting every game, for the co-ed soccer team last Fall.
“It was unfortunate, Maddie Roark pulled her quad in warmups, so she wasn’t able to go tonight,” Nolting said. “We would have seen some different things on the field had she been able to play. Hopefully she will be ready to go in our next game.”
On Friday, the Cougars will host Herron, a charter school from Indianapolis.