MANKATO -- The starters for the Trojan boys' soccer team played just 17 minutes in a 1-0 loss to Mankato Loyola Tuesday.
"We had the usual starters sit after a little bit to give our reserves a chance to show us what they had," WHS coach Smitty Ektnitphong said. "It was a nice game to give our guys a look before sectional next week."
Even with the starters in, the Trojans couldn't get much going as many of their passes were off the mark.
"After last game, the players admitted to being worn out," Ektnitphong said. "It is tough to play again with just a 12 hour turn around. And we don't want to wear them out and have someone get injured."
Not only did the reserves see action, but starting goalie Kody Honius stepped out of the net to play forward.
"It was nice to see Kody get out there and hustle up and down the field," Ektnitphong said. "We wanted to see him stretch his legs and get some work out of the net."
Neither team scored in the first half, but the Trojans Tri Nguyen had a chance with a good shot from 20 feet out, but it was saved by the Loyola goalie.
The second half was quiet except for the lone goal of the game by Loyola on a corner kick. The ball was lobbed in toward the near corner and looked to be an easy save for the Trojan goalkeeper, but a twisted ankle caused him to fall and miss the ball as it sailed into the net.
"That was the only unfortunate thing for us all game," Ektnitphong said. "Our defense played well other than that."
With just under six minutes left in the second half, the Trojans got another chance on a cross from Andrew Johnson into the box. Honius ended up with the ball, but could not get it past Loyola's goalie.
"We are looking forward to going up to St. Peter," Ektnitphong said. "They beat us at home last time, so I hope we are full strength to get a little redemption. And that might give us some momentum going into sectionals."
The Trojans travel to St. Peter Thursday for their last match of the regular season.
Trojans 0 0 -- 0
Loyola 0 1 -- 1