Late goal lifts Durango past ‘Dogs

Blowing past the final defender and drawing out the goalie, Durango High School senior Stephanie Wilson lined a shot from the left side of the box into the right corner of the net.

It mirrored Palisade’s goal in the middle of the second half to tie the game, but Wilson’s second goal Saturday came with about 30 seconds left and made the Demons a 2-1 winner in nonleague girls soccer at Peach Bowl Park.

The loss was disappointing for the Bulldogs, but Palisade coach Raina Sorensen accentuated the positive.

“We’re gonna focus on the fact we came back from a 1-0 deficit,” she said. “Give us another five minutes on the field, and we probably would’ve fought back from the second one.”

With Palisade (7-2) fresh off spring break and playing its third game in six days, Sorensen said it was a long week, and it included the Bulldogs’ first loss of the season, a 4-0 setback Thursday at Battle Mountain. Sorensen said her players were tired, but they fought through it.

Scoring also has been a challenge for the Bulldogs since their leading scorer, Cruz Maestas, went down with a season-ending knee injury. So, battling back after scoring only one goal in the previous two games led Sorensen to add, “The fact we scored shows we’re working hard and moving in the right direction.”

Audrey Rose Kachin delivered that goal about 10 minutes into the second half, taking a pass from Nicole Harkreader and dribbling up the left-middle of the field.

She got past the last Durango defender, then crossed a shot past the goalie into the right corner.

The Demons led 1-0 at the half, and Durango coach Dalon Parker told his players they needed to play hard for all 40 minutes in a half, not just the first 30 minutes. He emphasized keeping their intensity at the end of the half.

His team had its lulls in the second half, but the Demons 
(3-3-2) delivered at the end.

“We started to possess at the right time,” Parker said. “We got that (goal) with that extra oomph the last 5, 10 minutes of the game.”

It also made sense that Wilson delivered. She’s been ill in recent days, including Saturday, but she’s “physically gifted” and “a mentally and physically strong young lady,” Parker said.

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