The Portales Ram and Lady Ram soccer teams missed several scoring opportunities Thursday afternoon as the Clovis junior varsity girls beat Portales 4-2 and the Wildcat boys edged out the Rams 2-1.
“They weren’t aggressive,” Ram volunteer coach Grant Shanahan said. “They were letting the ball run the play, and they were just there. It’s good. It’s a reality check that they need to pick it up.”
The girls started the doubleheader and the Lady Wildcats jumped out to a 4-1 lead at the half on the strength of two first half Clovis penalty kicks.
Head coach Traci Sievers made a few halftime adjustments, including bringing sophomore Lizzie Armstrong out of the goal and into the defense.
“About halfway through the first half, Lizzie flagged me from the goal,” Sievers said. “She’s pretty good at recognizing what’s going on, and she thought that if she was out there, she could make a big difference as a defender, so we made the switch.”
Sophomore Marissa Best scored Portales’ lone goal in the first half on a penalty kick.
“At halftime we talked about what adjustments needed to be made as far as the way the defense was playing,” Sievers said. “(In the) second half we shut them out and we pulled them offsides several times.”
Freshman Capri Adams added another goal for the Lady Rams in the second half.
Sievers said the Portales attack suffered because many girls are fighting injuries and fatigue.
“We played like every other day for two weeks now, and I think their bodies are kind of worn out,” Sievers said. “We knew they were a quick team and good on their fundamentals so it was a good test for us.”
The Rams were tied for much of their game, until Clovis scored late in the second half.
After the Wildcats took an early 1-0 lead, Portales eighth grader Kyle Bonem scored in the 32nd minute to tie the score 1-1.
The Wildcats broke the tie with about nine minutes left in the game, and won 2-1.
“They’re playing real timid today,” Ram volunteer assistant coach Grant Shanahan said. “It didn’t look like the same team that played in our last game. They took a small step backwards actually.”