Lady Wranglers skirmish top-ranked teams

Robert Galbreath photo Junior Fatima Valles battles her opponent for the ball during the April 21 varsity game against Cody.

PINEDALE – The Pinedale High School Lady Wrangler soccer team put up a defiant fight against the top two teams in the 3A West Conference over the weekend.

On Friday, April 21, Pinedale hosted undefeated No. 1 Cody as a bitter-cold wind roared in from the west. Cody established a significant 9-1 lead by halftime. Refusing to yield in the second half, the Lady Wrangler defense tightened up and held Cody to only two goals. The final tally favored Cody, 11-1.

Pinedale traveled to play No. 2 Powell on Saturday, April 22. The Lady Wranglers came up short against the Lady Panthers, 5-0.

“The game against Cody started out pretty rough, but the girls really turned it around in the second half,” said Head Coach Shanda Jensen. “For the Powell game, it was a rough travel day, but the girls stuck with it and never gave up.”

Cody set the momentum early in the first half with a string of goals. The Lady Wranglers found their footing and managed to break through Cody’s defense as the first half progressed. Senior Miros Gutierrez delivered two powerful shots on goal.

The Lady Wranglers ended their season scoring drought late in the first half. Freshman Mia Lehr skillfully dribbled the ball deep into Cody territory and lined up for a perfect kick into the net.

Cody found itself ahead, 9-1, as the first half came to an end.

Cody commenced the second half with a goal before the Lady Wranglers closed ranks. Sophomore Samantha Brannan stepped back in as goalie and picked up two saves. Defensive footwork by sophomore Cora Koci prevented a shot on goal by Cody.

Brannan made two more saves, shutting down a corner kick on the first save.

Cody managed to score its final goal. Brannan responded with another pair of saves. Gutierrez stopped a shot on goal. Defensive hustle by Koci and sophomore Avery Hughes cleared the ball.

Gutierrez snagged a steal, setting up senior Addison Bing for a shot on goal. Junior Anna Lehr followed up with her own shot on goal.

Brannan grabbed two additional saves. Bing rounded out the second half with a shot on goal.

The home game versus Lander, originally scheduled for April 25, was moved to Thursday, April 27, due to poor weather on Tuesday. Results were not available at press time.

The Lady Wranglers play Lander again at an away game on Thursday, May 4.