Boys soccer: A tough start
A couple of shutout losses to start the season haven't dampened Farmington boys soccer coach Julian Buss's spirits or lowered his expectations for his team this season.
The Tigers started the fall season with a pair of 2-0 losses to South Suburban Conference opponents Rosemount and Lakeville North last week, but Buss liked the level of play they displayed and is confident his team will turn things around as the season progresses.
"I like our game and our chances this year. Yes, we wound up losing our first two, but Rosemount and Lakeville North were worthy opponents," he said. "I think that with the speed and skill on this Farmington team that as the season progresses and we start to come together as a team that we will find that we can really play a good game. I think that these first two losses change nothing about our season."
Last Thursday's opener at Rosemount remained scoreless for nearly 70 minutes before the Irish got on the board courtesy of what Buss called a "defensive error." Just over eight minutes later, an unintentional handball in the box set up a Rosemount penalty kick that got by keeper Isaac Toenjes to make it 2-0.
Sam Peterson played between the pipes in the first half and stopped five shots in 40 minutes to keep the game scoreless.
Buss was pleased with the team's passing and movement, but not so much with its defensive mistakes and inability to finish around the net.
"This was a great first game for us. The starting 11 showed that they can play a fast game with good passing and moving. We are still getting used to each other as some new players get a chance to see the pace of the game," he said. "We can't afford to play such good defense and then have short lapses that result in goals ...and I feel we do not attack the net as well as we could. We are getting shots and opportunities, and perhaps we have simply been unlucky, but we have not been able to strike as of yet."
Saturday's home opener against Lakeville North played out in a similar fashion. The Panthers headed a rebound into the net with seven minutes remaining in the first half and added a second goal midway through the second half to go up 2-0.
Peterson stopped six shots in the first half and Toenjes three in the second.
The Tigers hosted Lakeville South Tuesday and are back at Tiger Stadium tonight to take on Rochester John Marshall. The Missota Conference season opens next Thursday at Chanhassen.