On Tuesday, March 16, the Thomson Middle School Soccer Dogs traveled to Putnam County to take on a region foe. After the dust settled on the field, the Dogs were on the losing end of the score, 1-0.
The Dogs did not give up the fight without great effort, however. Head Coach Russ Gladden and Assistant Coach Julie Gerlach noted, "Chris Harrison, Casey Brooks, and Holly Barker showed incredible endurance and heart by playing the entire 60 minutes without subs."
On Thursday, March 18, the Dogs were in action at home against the Wrens Colts, whom they had previously defeated in a narrow 1-0 victory on a wet field last week. The Dogs tied the Colts in this second meeting.
Wrens drew first blood, scoring on a penalty kick in the first minutes of the opening half. With outstanding defense led by Holly Barker and Matt McEver, the Dogs did not allow another goal during regulation play. The Dogs responded to the challenge and, in the last portion of the first half, Mark Howard completed a shot on goal to tie the game at 1-1.
Despite numerous shots by Quitney Hordens, Brooks, Josh Withrow, and Mary Catherine Finnerty that just missed the mark, neither team could find the goal again as time expired. The match was still tied at 1-1 at the end of the second half.
After a brief discussion with officials and the opposing coaches, it was agreed that the two teams would participate in a shootout. Thomson and Wrens both chose five players to take shots on goal, defended only by the opposing goalie.
TMS goalie Jake Walters successfully defended the first shot from WMS. The TMS team's firstshot sailed over the goal post, narrowly missing the net. Wrens' second shot was successful and the pressure was on for the Dogs to make a shot.
The Dogs stepped in and gave a valiant effort, butthe secondshot also went over the net. Wrens made its third shot, and, with only three players left in the shootout and down 3-1, TMS sent in its third player. However,the Dogs' finalshot narrowly missed the target as well, and the game ended with Wrens claiming a 3-1 victory.
However, after the shootout was reviewed by region officials, they announced Monday morning that the game would be recorded as a 1-1 tie.