After a slow and sluggish start, the Garden City girls’ soccer team (7-1, 2-0) got on a rhythm and continued to roll and extended their winning streak to seven games, after defeating the Thomas More Prep-Marian Monarchs, 2-0, Tuesday night at Buffalo stadium.
“I thought we played well enough. We got off to a slow start, but after a while, we got to where we wanted to be,” said head coach Joaquin Padilla of his team’s performance.
It was somewhat out of character for the Buffaloes to get off to a slow start, seeing as many of their goals this season have come early in the match. The slow start might have to do with the back-to-back games that were scheduled for this week.
“Yea. I think (the back to back games) might have affected us at the start, once we got in a rhythm it really didn’t matter,” Padilla said.
The slow start really only lasted about 20 minutes in the first half, and it was for sure ended when junior Elyssa Salazar scored her seventh goal of the season in the 22nd minute, off a rebounded ball from the TMP goalie.
The story so far this season, for Garden City, has been the resurgence of its offense, which has outscored opponents 23-3 this season. But the unsung heroes of the season thus far is the defensive unit for the Buffaloes, only allowing three goals this season in eight games. The defense helped the Buffs stay in the game early, as the Monarchs had a quick start.
Padilla has been impressed with his defense this season.
“The defense is pretty solid. They keep improving every game and as long as they keep improving every game, we can continue to play the same way we have been playing," Padilla said.
After a 52nd minute free kick scare from TMP, which bounced off the post, the Buffaloes put the game out of reach in the 61st minute after freshman Anahi Castillo dribbled past the defender to double Garden City’s lead.
“I think I played pretty good, I had a little struggle because I’m still getting used to the field, but overall I had fun,” said Castillo of her performance on.
It was Castillo’s first goal of the season, which came in a crucial point in the game. Castillo said the mining of her first goal this season was, “Very exciting, honestly. Very exciting.”
The Garden City Buffaloes girls’ soccer team has officially hit the halfway mark of the season, and many underclassmen or players who did not play on the team lasts year are stepping up. Padilla pointed one out in particular, “Kalandrah (Chairez) plays up and puts a lot of pressure and runs her heart out, puts pressure and is able to win the loose balls and gives us a chance to make plays.”
Garden City’s next game will be a big WAC matchup as the Buffaloes take on rival, Dodge City Demons at 5:30 p.m. Thursday at Buffalo Stadium.