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Soccer: WHS boys shut out Jordan, girls shut out by Jordan

The 2016 Big South Conference champion Worthington Trojans boys soccer team got a warm welcome from its fans in its first home match since clinching the conference title. The student section was packed with kids waiting to meet the players after ...

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TIM MIDDAGH / DAILY GLOBE Jordan's Massan Vogel (7) tries to get in front of a shot on goal by Worthington's Ivan Rodriguez.

The 2016 Big South Conference champion Worthington Trojans boys soccer team got a warm welcome from its fans in its first home match since clinching the conference title. The student section was packed with kids waiting to meet the players after the game on Meet the Trojans Night. And the team put on a show for them.

Worthington topped Jordan 6-0 in a non-conference game at Trojan Field on Thursday. The Trojans midfield --led by central duo Victor Alvarez and Ivan Rodriguez -- controlled the game from start to finish, stopping nearly all of the Hubmen’s attacks before they ever crossed into the Worthington zone and allowing only two shots on goal.

While the WHS boys were shutting out Jordan in Worthington Thursday, the Worthington girls soccer team were hoping to get their first victory of the season at Jordan. It didn’t happen, however. Jordan won 4-0.

Boys
Trojans 6, Jordan 0 WORTHINGTON -- “This year we had a little problem trying to find a good combination at central midfield,” Worthington head coach Smitty Ektnitphong said. “Now, I rotate between Jon (Keoduangsy), Edwin (Hernandez) and Ivan to drop down to pair with Victor. We see every game what the opponent presents to us -- if we need speed, we put Jon or Edwin in there and if we need possession and a big shooter, then we get Ivan up there.”

As good as the Trojans midfield was at stopping the Jordan attacks, it was equally proficient taking possession back and turning it into points. Rodriguez scored the first two goals of the game a minute apart in the 14th and 15th minutes.

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He got on the end of an Anthony Sanchez pass and hammered home the goal to the right side of goal to make it 1-0 Trojans. Sanchez set up the goal, marauding through the center of the pitch before laying off to Rodriguez.

Then, a minute later, Rodriguez added another goal after corralling a rebound. He settled the ball down at his feet and fired a laser past the goalie to make it 2-0.

The score easily could have gotten out of hand in the first half, as Worthington put 13 shots on goal, but Jordan keeper Braeden Weber stood on his head and kept his team in the game.

Rodriguez could have started the scoring a bit earlier -- in the 11th minute -- if not for the outstanding keeper. The Trojans midfielder got a pass at the top of the key and fired a second-touch shot to the right side of the goal that took every inch of Weber’s reach to keep out. He dove across the face of the net and stuck his hand out just in time to deflect the ball and keep it from going in.

But he couldn’t get in front of all 30 of Worthington’s shots on goal, and the Trojans added four more in the second half, while continuing to keep Jordan from mounting an attack.

“We live and die on defense,” Ektnitphong said. “It sets the tone to know that we have a solid unit back there to take care of everything. That frees up the midfield to do a little bit more.”

Jon Keoduangsy scored with an assist by Kevin Gutierrez in the 45th minute to make it 3-0. Edwin Hernandez added another goal in the 50th minute with an assist from Rodriguez.

Octavio Loza added two late goals to bring the tally to six for the Trojans. In the 75th minute, he got on the end of a bouncing pass from Robert Ortiz, controlled it in front of him and knocked it in past the goalkeeper off the bounce. And he added another two minutes later in the 77th.

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The Trojans opened the game with a number their starters on the bench to give some of the backups and role players an opportunity to play meaningful minutes against an opposing first team.

“That was the game plan going in,” Ektnitphong said. “To get our second unit to go in there and play the first 40 minutes. I wanted them to go in there and make decisions, make passes and do the things that can give us some success.”

After the game, the triumphant 12-1 Trojans lined up for a meet and greet with their fans and autographed posters for a line of people that stretched from the home bench most of the way across the field.

Worthington remains undefeated in conference play at 10-0 and hosts New Ulm on Saturday at 1 p.m. at Trojan Field.

Worthington 2 4 -- 6

Jordan 0 0 -- 0

Girls
Jordan 4, Trojans 0 JORDAN -- The Trojan girls felt that they could be competitive with Jordan and perhaps get their first victory of the season. But events conspired against them.

With their primary goalkeeper out of action because of an injury, the Trojans used Victoria Esquivel -- who has never played goalkeeper before -- in net for the first half. In the second half coach Emily Ahlquist inserted freshman Emme Schmitz in goal.

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Jordan scored four goals in the first half. Schmitz, a much more experienced goalkeeper, shut out the Jaguars in the second half.

Schmitz could only play one half of the varsity match, by rule, because she played the full JV contest.

“They had a couple of breakaways,” Ahlquist described Jordan’s first half scoring. “(Victoria) doesn’t know how to handle breakaway goals -- she just doesn’t have the training. She played well, though. She did a good job of cutting off the angles.”

Schmitz had a strong second half. “She had a couple of really nice saves. She had seven in the second half. She was communicating well with the defense. She stepped up and did a real good job for us,” Ahlquist said.

Worthington had one great attempt at a goal. Ahmitara Alwal tried a shot from about 40 yards which slipped off the Jordan goalkeeper’s hands and hit the goalpost.

Jordan scored its first goal just 30 seconds into the match.

Worthington 0 0 -- 0

Jordan 4 0 -- 4

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