The Brookings-Harbor High School girls soccer team, down two starting players, was unable to gather enough offensive momentum to overcome a 0-4 deficit as time wound down Thursday in its loss to the Pelicans of Klamath Union High School.
"We're missing two starters in this game," Head Coach Fred Juarez said prior to the game Thursday. "Luckily we're deep enough on the bench that we're not going to be missing a whole lot, but we will miss them. I have just as much confidence in the players coming off the bench as I do in those two."
Starting freshman Crystal Rodriguez was out of the game with a clavicle broken in two places, and starting senior Louie Deraita was out serving a one-game suspension for a hard red card received in the Bruins final game of the regular season.
"It's tough when you're two starters down," Freshman Addi Fitzgerald said following the loss. "We did our best. I'm really sick right now, so I think I probably could have done better if I was healthy, but I was happy with what I did do."
Fitzgerald found her groove late in the second half and took four shots on goal in the last 10 minutes of the game, but was unable to convert the shots into points for the Lady Bruins.
"The girls played hard, they played the whole game," Juarez said. "They were determined and they wanted to score. This was a good experience for the girls who will return next year. It stinks to send off the seniors this way, but it was a good experience for the younger girls."
The Pelicans dominated the game from the beginning, keeping the ball on the Bruins' half of the field for the most part, putting their first goal on the board at the 25-minute mark.
The Pelicans second goal would come just two minutes later at 27 minutes.
A quick score to begin the second half and then another at 62 minutes put the Pelicans up for good and there was nothing the Bruins could do, despite their push in the last 10 minutes.
"If we would have just played like we did in the second half toward the end," Senior captain Brianna Juarez said. "We played like we had nothing to lose: We went out and just played the game. If we had played like that for the entire game, I think we would have won."