WEST PLAINS -- The Sikeston Bulldog soccer team defeated the West Plains Zizzers 3-1 Saturday in West Plains.
The Bulldogs (3-14) were able to strike first in the contest with a well placed goal from defensive player Stuart Strom only four minutes into the game.
"Stuart Strom, who is defensive player, came up and put a great shot on the ball," Sikeston head coach Derrick Long said. "That's all part of what we are trying to do by attacking with our offense and defensive players at the same time to add pressure to our opponent's defense and drive our scoring up."
The Bulldogs held the Zizzers scoreless in the first half and took a 1-0 lead into the second period.
Four minutes into that half, Darin Dicus added a goal. Sikeston was able to stretch it to a 3-0 led with 12 minutes left in the game off a Mikey Botkin goal. West Plains was able to score with two minutes in the game, but the damage was already done.
Long feels that his team's offense continues to improve.
"The scoring is beginning to come for us," he said. "It has been all about the transition from defense to offense. We've worked on that a lot in the last couple of weeks. We are starting to see the benefit of that hard work. We are starting to grasp the concepts of what we are trying to do. Hopefully, we can get on a roll and end the season on a high note."
Long points out that hard work is the driving force of his team.
"Our skills are not going to be as good as some of these programs we have to play," he said. "That's not going to happen. But I'll say this, no one that we play out works us. Where some have an abundance of skill, we have an abundance of will. I've been very pleased with our work ethic and heart all season. If we do what we can, we could be in any game."
Long notes that this win could be the 'fresh start' his team needs to finish the season on a good note.
"This was a big win for us," he said. "The way the wins are coming this year, we are struggling. To get three goals against a good team like West Plains was great. West Plains has beat a few teams that we have lost to this year, so that's a boost for us as well. I told my guys, 'lets forget about what has happened this year and look toward the games in front of us and the future.' We have three more revenge games this week against teams that beat us earlier in the season. So maybe this will be a fresh start for us and we can play well this coming week. The way we look at it, we are 1-0 right now."
The junior varsity Bulldogs also defeated West Plains 7-0.
The Bulldogs will face Fredericktown, a team they lost to earlier in the season, tonight at the Sikeston Complex.