Rutherford’s hot foot, formation change bring BLHS soccer back to .500 record
Patrick Rutherford is developing a knack for scoring this season.
The Basehor-Linwood forward has scored seven goals on the year, including two goals Monday in the Bobcats’ 4-1 soccer victory against Piper.
Rutherford helped the Bobcats rally in the game.
Piper scored first in the game. The Bobcats answered with 12 minutes left in the first half when Rutherford scored off a header on a corner kick. The score was 1-1 at halftime.
In the second half, Rutherford scored again — this time on a header off a corner kick.
Rutherford said he worked well with Beau Himpel on the front line against Piper.
“They were good. Beau and I worked together well playing up top,” Rutherford said. “I like it up top. I like playing forward.”
Rutherford has flourished as a result of lineup changes the Bobcats have made this season. The team adjusted from a 4-4-2 to a 4-3-3 formation, and success has followed.
“We have so many players who can play anywhere on the field, and it makes sense for us to work a lot of different combinations and see what works,” coach Jaclyn Naster said.
Basehor-Linwood scored again with about nine minutes left when Himpel kicked the ball into the left side of the net.
Piper attempted shots on goal throughout the contest but failed to score again on the Bobcats defense and goalkeeper Ryan Lawless.
The Bobcats’ final scoring sequence occurred with four minutes to play. Symon Seaton shot the ball. Himpel followed but his shot lay on the goal line. Seaton followed with a score.
As the goals piled up, Basehor-Linwood’s defense continued to shut down the Pirates.
Rutherford is becoming a go-to scorer for the Bobcats with seven goals so far on the year.
He scored two goals earlier this season in a 2-1 victory over Baldwin.
With Monday’s victory, the Bobcats are now 4-4 overall with eight games to play, matching their win total from last season.
“It feels nice to be 4-4 halfway through the year,” Naster said.
BLHS has started to play tougher soccer.
“We used to roll over, and we don’t anymore,” she said. “We know now that we have to pick up and go.”
BLHS was slated to play Wednesday against Tonganoxie. Results were unavailable at press time. The Bobcats next play at 6 p.m. Tuesday at home against Bonner Springs.