The Decatur boys soccer team needed to win and take control of a season that, up to this point, had gotten away from them. But they couldn’t, and the Gators fell 4-0 to the Kentridge Chargers on April 26.
“Kentridge was playing with more intensity. They wanted it more,” Gator Head Coach Brad Plemons said after the game.
It was a game where, outside the first 10 minutes, nothing went the way of the Gators.
Early on, Decatur threatened the Kentridge goalie with long balls over the backline to a streaking Riley Hanson down the right sideline. But they couldn’t cash in on any opportunities.
Late in the first half, the Chargers got their first goal of the game in the 36th minute.
The second half was all Chargers — actually all Daniel Vargas, as he netted a hat trick in the half.
Decatur just couldn’t match the energy the Chargers brought in the second half.
“In the first half we matched up pretty well against them. But in the second half, they seemed to bring an intensity that we didn’t match. The team definitely didn’t play up to their abilities, and as a coach that’s my responsibility,” Plemons said.
Decatur was coming in on the highest of highs after taking down unbeaten Tahoma, 2-1, on April 18. Tahoma beat Kentridge 2-1 in their last meeting so it seemed like a competitive contest coming into the game.
It’s been a season that the Gators haven’t performed as well as they wanted, but the team is young and has a bright future in front of them.
“We graduated nine seniors last year … So this is the first year this team has played together … I’m starting four freshmen, which is unusual. Usually I start just one or two,” Plemons said.
For the first half, it was extremely tight, with both teams taking chances. But Kentridge ran away with it in the end.
Decatur will need some help to reach the postseason this year. Plemons has never missed the playoffs since he took over as coach. The Gators have 13 points this season, and Kennedy is sitting at 15. The Gators have two games remaining, and if they win out, they need Kennedy to drop one of its last two.
The Gators finish the year off against Kentwood on the road April 29 before taking on Federal Way on May 2 at Decatur.