OUT OF TIME: Cardinals score 3 first-half goals, hang on late to beat Lynx

WEBSTER CITY – Timid is no way to play defense on the pitch.

Webster City certainly knows that now.

A lackluster first half containing the relentless attacks of Garner-Hayfield/Ventura handcuffed Webster City, as the Cardinals built a 3-1 lead and then held on after intermission to claim a 4-2 victory at Lynx Field.

WCHS (0-2) trimmed its deficit to 3-2 early in the second half and spent the better part of the 40-minute frame trying unsuccessfully to knot the match. Garner-Hayfield/Ventura (2-1) added an insurance goal with 1:05 remaining on a penalty kick off a handball to send the Lynx back to the drawing board.

Paul Baedke, the Lynx first-year head coach, was happy with the way his young defense responded in the second half. He just wished it would have occurred earlier.

“I think (the defenders) were more dedicated towards making it happen and getting it turned around in the second half, but we never got many breaks,” he said. “They just came our more aggressive and that was nice to see. There’s no quit in these girls.”

G-H/V owned a 24-12 shots advantage and 14-10 edge in shots on goal. Eight of their 11 first-half shots were on goal, which forced sophomore goalkeeper Maia Jaycox to dive all over the field. She finished with 10 saves.

The Cardinals got on the scoreboard just 50 seconds into the match on a powerful shot off the right foot of Riannan Kadrlik.

WCHS senior Jesse Lee quickly answered on a runout down the right side of the field. She weaved through the defense and beat Cardinals’ keeper Sam Betz on the right side of the goal just 15 seconds later.

Autumn Weaver added a goal and an assist for G-H/V over the final 34 minutes of the first half. Her rifle just inside the left post in the sixth minute put the Cardinals up 2-1; 30 minutes later she flicked a pass to Emily Spilman, who sent it past a diving Jaycox for a 3-1 cushion.

Lee notched her second goal of the bout and fourth of the season just 1:26 into the second half off a pass from Molly Gilbert. Lee got all the way to the goal box, stopped and fired just inside the left upright.

Lee – a first-year WCHS student who moved to the area from Texas – has scored all of the Lynx goals through two matches. Her speed and ball handling are huge attributes, as is her penchant to create contact rather than shy away from it.

“She gets after it very well and has a really good shot with a lot of power to it,” Baedke said of Lee. “It’s too bad it’s going to be a one-and-done with her. I would have really liked to have her for a couple more years.”

Lee had two more chances at goal later in the second half, including on a free kick from just 15 yards out at the midpoint, but it sailed just over the crossbar.

The Cardinals put the match away on the penalty-kick goal by Mackenzie Haag with 1:04 remaining.

WCHS will return to the field on Thursday at Aplington-Parkersburg.