Buffs rebound for blowout of Great Bend
By KEVIN THOMPSON
By KEVIN THOMPSON
Talk about not over thinking.
After losing Monday to conference foe Hays, the Garden City High School softball team had little time to think about things as it hosted conference rival Great Bend less than 24 hours later.
The Lady Buffs found not thinking too much was to their advantage, using the home field and the wind early and often in their 10-0 win over the Lady Panthers.
They also took advantage of the relative inexperience of Great Bend to rebound after the 3-1 loss to Hays.
The bulk of the first-half action took place in front of the visitor's goal, but not even the 34-mph head wind could deter the Buffs players as they took a 6-0 lead at intermission.
Tiffany Butler got the Buffs on the board first and early, taking a rebound in front of the goal for an easy score just eight minutes in.
A half minute later, Evelyn Rodriguez hit from a long way out on the right, bending the ball into the far upper left corner of the net.
Amber Miller scored the next two goals in the next two minutes to give the Buffs a 4-0 lead just 14 minutes into the game.
She added a third straight goal later before Butler closed out the way she opened it, with a goal.
Four other Buffs scored in the second half, including starting goalkeeper Ashlee Richman, who came out of goal to try her feet on offense.
Her goal in the 74th minute ended the game early on the mercy rule.
For Miller, it was all about redemption after Monday's loss. Garden City was still on break then, and it showed. Not so Tuesday.
"We worked really well as a team and I feel like our defense worked really well," she said.
Of her hat trick, she said, "I was in the right place at the right time."
Miller said head coach Joaquin Padilla had chastised them about their low energy level following Monday's loss.
The team took his message to heart.
"We came out with a lot more energy today," she said. "We just wanted to redeem ourselves from losing to Hays."
Garden City had 33 shots on goal and limited Great Bend to just five, none of them a threat.
Playing in the wind is something the Buffs have worked on, and it paid huge dividends early.
Padilla was more impressed with his team's effort Tuesday in the win, but he thought his team had moved the ball well against Hays.
The difference was the energy.
"We were more aggressive today than yesterday," he said. "We saw more energy. We worked on getting three touches then get rid of the ball, which is what we want to do — to not hold the ball too long. We did well on that."
The blowout allowed them to work girls into the game and work on the "tough things" they need to do, Padilla added.
Moving the ball, moving without the ball are little things that help a team win, he said.
"(Monday) we were stuck to the carpet. Today we weren't," Padilla said. "Those are the things we can work on."
Garden City moves to 5-3 on the season and improve to 2-1 in the WAC.
Box score in Scoreboard, Page B2.