The Logan High School soccer team made its official debut on Saturday afternoon and lost at Nitro 11-1.
Nitro, a former Class AAA school and a longstanding established program, had an outstanding season a year ago as the Wildcats went 16-4-2.
Dino Noe scored the only goal for Logan in Saturday’s match — a penalty shot due to a foul inside the goalie’s box.
“We played our hearts out against a seasoned team with 16 wins last season,” Logan coach Jay Trump said. “Even though it was a loss, now we can see as a team where we come up short. Nitro is a very strong team in passing and finding that open lane. We still need a lot of work when it comes to knowing and trusting to make the pass, not to where a teammate is but to where they will be.”
Trump said his team will learn and improve.
“We’re bound to have growing pains as we learn to work as a team,” he said. “Playing a hard team like Nitro will show us our faults and help us find our shortfalls. Playing teams like this will help us to become a better team in the end. It’s been said that if you play tough teams, you will become a better team. If you play easy teams it’s not helping your game out. We have to want it also. We all have to remember that nothing will come easy in life. We’re going to have to fight for it.”
Trump said his team played well on defense particularly early in the game.
“Our defense at the start of the game was strong with Joey Vinson as the center defender,” he said. “He controlled the back line. He was there to clear out the ball when it needed to be. With Michael Honeycutt on one side and Hunter on the other it seemed to be working well. Austin Thompson was in goal. You have to remember, he has never played soccer before and he played as goalie at this level and did great.”
Several players saw action for Logan.
“Our tough girl Whitney Evans was having leg troubles and we had to pull her off to make sure she was OK,” he said. “Steven Clemens went in for her and Steven is a hard player and brings a different energy to the field. With Walker Jeffery and Walter Macnamara up on the front line, we tried to get all the players playing time just to let them get their feet wet. Cody Nunley, along with Autumn Isaacs, got their share of it and Raeanne Reed, along with Madison Farley and Kalee Vernatter, were a few of the players who got to see firsthand what varsity soccer is all about.”
Trump said he was glad his team was able to compete.
“In the end, when the horn ended the game, the Logan Wildcats left everything on the field,” he said. “Even though it was a loss, I felt like we played hard. Next time we will have to play even harder.”
Logan has its historic first-ever home opener on Tuesday at 6 p.m. against Class AAA Riverside at Logan Stadium.
“Our home opener is Tuesday against Riverside and I feel like we will match up pretty good with them,” Coach Trump said.
2016 Logan High School
Soccer Schedule (0-1):
Aug. 20: at Nitro, L 1-11
Aug. 23: Riverside, 6 p.m.
Aug. 27: Poca, noon
Aug. 30: at Mingo Central, 6:30 p.m.
Sept. 2-3: at Huntington tounament, TBA
Sept. 8: Winfield, 5:30 p.m.
Sept. 12: Tug Valley, 6 p.m.
Sept. 14: Lincoln County, 6 p.m. (JV only)
Sept. 15: at Sissonville, 7 p.m.
Sept. 17: Belfry (Ky.), 10 a.m.
Sept. 24: at Herbert Hoover, 11 a.m.
Oct. 1: at Belfry (Ky.), 10 a.m.
Oct. 6: Mingo Central, 6:30 p.m.
Oct. 10: at Tug Valley, 6 p.m.
Oct. 12: Lincoln County, 6 p.m. (JV only)
(Paul Adkins is the Sports Editor of the Logan Banner. He can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @PAdkinsBanner).