As cliche as it sounds, Glenwood’s substate soccer loss to Adel DeSoto Minburn (ADM) Saturday afternoon really was much closer than the final score would indicate.
The Rams took 15 more shots than ADM, but it was the Tigers who would tally three goals in the final 15 minutes of the game to punch their ticket to the state tournament with a 3-0 win before more than 200 spectators at the GCHS soccer field.
“We just struggled (to score). I think if we would have found the back of the net just once, it would have been a different game,” Glenwood coach Shane Keeling said. “I really feel like we outpossessed them the majority of the game, but I just think sometimes when you don’t find the back of the net, that’s what happens.”
The Rams peppered ADM goalkeeper Darold Baker throughout the game, but the ball never found its way to the back of the net. Scout Crow had a shot bounce off the post in the first half, while Tyler Jensen and Jake Radcliff were denied goals by Baker in the second half.
The Rams were holding up strong against the Tigers’ physical style of play until the 66th minute - that’s when Jacob Hutzell broke the scoreless deadlock with a shot into the right side of the net.
Glenwood had more scoring chances in the final minutes of the contest, but the Tigers iced the game with a pair of scores in the final three minutes of play.
The loss was disappointing for the Rams, who finish the season with a 13-5 record, but Keeling said his players have nothing to hang their heads about after turning in another strong season.
“It’s been a great run. Sometimes when I go other places, I hear soccer in this part of the state isn’t strong, but these guys showed up and definitely beat some teams this season,” Keeling said. “I really feel like the Waverly Tournament would have been a great opportunity for us to make a statement across the state of Iowa, but of course that got cancelled. We were riding pretty high off our win against (Sioux City) North at the time. I really feel like that (cancellation) took a little bit of our momentum away.”
Keeling said despite the loss of some key performers from this year’s team, he has high expectations for 2014.
“I’m very proud of these guys. It was a good season. I said this last year, but I really like who we have coming back. I think we’re definitely going to be a contender. I’m putting that out there early, but I have a lot of faith in these guys.”