Panthers drop league match to Bruce Randolph 2-1 |

Panthers drop league match to Bruce Randolph 2-1

Sophomore Jaime Rios scores on a penalty kick late in the second half during a 2-1 loss to Bruce Randolph. Sawyer D'Argonne / Sky-Hi News.

The Middle Park Panthers Soccer Team lost 2-1 to the Bruce Randolph Grizzlies Wednesday afternoon, dropping to 4-5 on the season.

Middle Park came out of the gate slow. The Grizzlies dominated the first half, taking 15 shots and working their way to a 1-0 lead.

“We just started off slow physically and mentally,” said Head Coach Dane Ruttenberg. “Too many times we were just kicking the ball up the field instead of finding open teammates. Our runs were straight up the field instead of finding angles and supporting our teammates.”

Ruttenberg said he was also disappointed with the way the team communicated with each other.

Bruce Randolph came out confident in the second half, but Middle Park was ready to counter. The Panthers played a much better game after the break, moving the ball and creating scoring opportunities. They weren’t able to make them count, however, and the Grizzlies snuck a second goal past Freshman Goalkeeper Ethan Ruttenberg with only 5:20 left on the clock.

“The second half was a completely different game,” said Ruttenberg. “That’s what you want. You want players when they’re struggling to be able to play their way out of it. And they gave us a chance to win.”

Sophomore Jaime Rios scored on a penalty kick late in the second half, but time ultimately ran out on the Panthers.

“It’s unfortunate because they were a beatable team, and it would have been an important league win,” said Ruttenberg. “It’s just unfortunate to see it slip away.”

The Panthers will close out their season with five league games, starting with a road matchup with Bennett on Sept. 30.

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