Basehor-Linwood soccer drops opener to Maranatha
Even though the Basehor-Linwood soccer team dropped its opening game of the season to Maranatha Academy 1-0 Friday at home, it wasn’t a disappointing result.
Second-year coach Austin Knipp saw the first game as a learning experience that his team can build off of.
“Like I told them, it’s first game so whatever happens, happens,” Knipp said. “It was encouraging. The big thing for us was scoring, so were going to be working on that hard core this week.”
In many ways, it was a typical first game of the season. Both teams struggled to maintain possession, and both squads spent significant time feeling their way through the game rather than seizing control.
Knipp saw some encouraging signs that he believes should benefit the Bobcats in the upcoming weeks.
“I like our movement. I liked our passing. I liked how we were getting the ball out wide,” he said. “We had good crosses. Their keeper was just 6-10, so it’s kind of hard to get it over him.”
Knipp hyperbolized the height of the Maranatha goalkeeper a tad, but the 6-foot-4 Robby Thomas still had a giant impact on the game — a fact more surprising because it was his first ever game between the pipes.
“He had some fantastic saves,” Maranatha coach Matt Gordon said.
Basehor-Linwood appeared poised to take the lead early in the second half, but an offsides call negated a goal.
Later in the half, Maranatha took the lead on a goal by Regan Houchin when he redirected a corner kick with a header for the game-winner.
Despite the loss, Knipp said he already has seen great continuity with his squad.
“The good thing about it is I really haven’t seen one person (have to do it all),” Knipp said. “This year we have a group of leaders that push the team.”
Knipp said the Bobcats have plenty of room for improvement.
“Our spacing (wasn’t great),” he said. “Sometimes in the defense we got a little cluttered. We’ll keep doing what were doing and (build on it) as the season goes.”
Basehor-Linwood next plays at 5:30 p.m. Thursday against Tonganoxie.