SIKESTON - The Sikeston Lady Bulldogs soccer team dropped their home opener on a cold and blustery Tuesday afternoon, to the Perryville Lady Pirates 2-0.
A day removed from their upset win over Notre Dame, Sikeston came out flat at home and have now lost to Perryville twice, early in the season.
"We are Jekyl and Hyde right now," said Sikeston head coach Derrick Long. "The first game against Perryville we played pretty decent. The next couple of games we didn't play up to our capabilities. Against Notre Dame, we played excellent and got a big win. Tonight, we got out worked and out hustled."
In a pretty even first half, Perryville got on the board at 16:00 on a corner kick from Alyssa Bauwens to Amber Hacker, who scored the goal.
Although trailing at the intermission, Sikeston outshot Perryville 7-5 and seemed right in the game.
"Sikeston did a good job in the first half," said Perryville head coach Stacie Sargent. "It was an even first half, with both teams playing hard and battling for the win."
The Lady Pirates controlled the action in the second half, with most of the action taking place in the Sikeston defensive end. Perryville dominated the offensive chances and outshot the Lady Bulldogs 12-3 in the second half.
"Like I said, we just simply got outplayed in the second half," said Long. "We pride ourselves in outworking our opponents and tonight, that did not happen. A lot of blame can be spread around, but the majority should be on the coaches."
Perryville (3-1) played aggressive on offense and attacked the goal in the second half.
"In our win against Notre Dame," said Long, "we played three back on defense and it worked well. Perryville played a different style than Notre Dame. While Notre Dame likes to spread the field and were good passers, Perryville attacked at every possible chance and we needed to have four defenders back there. I take the blame for that error. But that is why we have regular season games, have to work out the bugs."
Sikeston let a goal get away late in the contest, as the Lady Pirates scored a fluke goal at 51:00 on kick that Sikeston goalie Paige Silverthorn normally stops.
The kick was punched forward without much velocity and Silverthorn was in prime position for the save. However, the ball slid under the hands and through the legs for a soft goal. Perryville led 2-0 and cruised the rest of the way.
"We pretty much controlled the second half of action," said Sargent. "I was happy with our effort and the way we put pressure on goal. The second goal was one in a million, but that can happen when you pressure the goal the way we did."
Perryville goalie Chastity Marr recorded the shutout for the Lady Pirates and had eight saves in the game.
"Chastity does a good job of taking command out there," said Sargent. "We have a young team and we need her leadership."
Besides the one goal late in the second half, Silverthorn did a solid job in goal, as Perryville peppered her constantly late in the contest. Silverthorn ended the game with 17 saves on 19 chances.
Scoring has been a issue for the Lady Bulldogs early in the season. Through five games, Sikeston has scored a total of five goals.
"We are struggling early this season with the offense," said Long. "I have shuffled the lineup and tried some new things, but we are not being as aggressive as I want on the offensive end. It's early, going to be a long season and we are going to improve."
Sikeston (1-4) will cross the river on Thursday to play Anna-Jonesboro at 4 p.m.