Girls’ soccer loses 1-3 in first Section game to Hopkins

Team reflects on winning season

Alec Pittman

After tying Hopkins earlier in the season, junior captain Rafferty Kugler said she couldn’t help but feel disappointed after the team’s loss to Hopkins Oct. 13 in sections.

Kugler said the hard work of the team and undefeated conference season overshadowed the loss.

“We gave them a good game and finished out a great season,” Kugler said.

Senior captain Mei Li Liss said the end of the game, which ended the team’s season, brought on emotions for many players.

“Right when the game ended I started to tear up a little bit because I was realizing that this was the last time I would play with all these girls,” Liss said. “I felt bad also (because) I wish I could have done more to help us win.”

According to Kugler, her fondest memory of the season resides as the day she and the team played games together.

“Our varsity scavenger hunt and team bonding day was really fun,” Kugler said. “Also, beating Benilde (was nice too).”

Head coach Benjy Kent said the team had a very positive attitude heading into the game based on their play in the regular season.

“We went into that game having tied them (Hopkins) at their field a week earlier and having beaten Benilde, so we came into the game fairly confident,” Kent said. “I don’t think we were mentally prepared for the kind of game it was going to be.”

Liss said the hopes of the team going to State were ended with the loss to Hopkins.

“I thought we had good chances of going to State,” Liss said. “With only a 1-0 loss to both Wayzata and Washburn, the first and second seed in our section, I think we would have been good contenders to play at U.S. Bank Stadium for the State tournament.”

According to Kent, the team should take pride in their undefeated season in the conference, giving up only one goal.

“In any conference it’s not that hard to give up five or six goals. Shutting out Cooper and Benilde and giving up one to Chanhassen — it could have easily been a season where you didn’t give up a goal the whole season,” Kent said. “It was a very strong defensive year for the team.”

According to Kent, the team had a 9-4-1 record, going 7-0 in conference play as well as beating Benilde for the first time in 14 years. The team only gave up one goal throughout the entire conference season.