Douglas boys show progress in games
Even though the Douglas High boys soccer team still is looking for its first win this season, coach Chase Zumpft is encouraged by what he saw on three successive days last week.
Douglas (0-1-2 overall, 0-0-1 league) started with two ties before absorbing a 3-1 loss at Truckee on Friday. The Tigers rallied in the second half to tie McQueen 1-1 on Wednesday and South Tahoe 1-1 on Thursday.
“I feel we could have won any of those three games,” Zumpft said. “It would be nice if we could get on the score sheet first instead of having to play from behind. We still have a lot of work to do, but I’m happy with the way the boys battled for 240 minutes on three days. They never quit.”
Thursday’s game followed a pattern similar pattern the Tigers followed one day before in a tie against Northern 4A conference foe McQueen. That is, the Tigers fell behind 1-0 and then came back to tie the score in the second half. Senior forward Zach Holt scored against South Tahoe.
On Friday, Truckee scored twice in the second half to break up a 1-1 duel. The Wolverines took a 1-0 lead before Douglas came back to tie the score on a goal by sophomore Jonathan Valdez.
“The 3-1 score doesn’t reflect on what should have been,” Zumpft said. “Our legs just got tired.”
Among the bright spots defensively was Mario Meza at sweeper.
“I like to call him a general,” Zumpft said of the senior. “He’s doing a good job of directing everyone back there, making sure they’re in the right place.”
Two other new starters, Senior goalkeeper Dennis Gingrich and sophomore center back Camden Brown, were also solid.
“With so many new players coming in, we’re still trying to see where we’re at as far as getting players in the right positions,” Zumpft said. “That’s why playing those three games was ideal for us. We have a better idea what our flaws and strengths are; now we can get to work and move on from here.”
For Douglas, the objective is to keep moving forward. The Tigers face a tough Northern 4A cross-over test today at North Valleys, then host Spanish Springs on Saturday. The Tigers also host Incline in a non-conference game Monday at 6:30 p.m.
“I feel our league is an open playing field,” Zumpft said, looking ahead to Sierra League play. “Galena (defending state champion) lost to North Valleys last week and Manogue beat Hug, so we don’t know what to expect. Every game is going to be different. We just want to try and get better every day.”
Note: Zumpft faced a familiar rival at South Tahoe, a team now coached by Leon Abravanel. Zumpft and Abravanel were stars for the Tigers and Vikings (both graduated in 2004). Abravanel played for the University of Denver and had multiple MLS try-outs.