SOCCER ROUNDUP: Park Hill claims Smithville Invitational title

BRYCE MERENESS/Citizen photo Park Hill forward Alison Walls, right, takes a shot against Staley during a Smithville Invitational game on Saturday, April 11 at Smithville High School in Smithville, Mo. SMITHVILLE, Mo. — Park Hill started fast and looked ready to pile up the goals.

Raena Woodruff opened the scoring in the second minute for the Trojans and plenty of chances followed against Staley in their second game of the Smithville Invitational. Ultimately, the Falcons weathered the pressure and earned a 1-1 draw Saturday, April 11 at Smithville High School.

Despite the disappointing tie, Park Hill went 2-0-1 in the two-day, four-team round robin and won the championship.

BRYCE MERENESS/Citizen photo Park Hill forward Raena Woodruff, left, dribbles past a Staley defender during a Smithville Invitational game on Saturday, April 11 at Smithville High School in Smithville, Mo.

“We struggled to convert,” Park Hill coach Brandt Bell said of the matchup with Staley. “We played a pretty good game; we just didn’t finish our opportunities. When you let a well-coached team hang around and not put things away, sometimes it comes back to hurt you. The girls gave a great effort for the last 20 minutes, so I can’t fault them for that. It’s a frustrating game for us.”

The result didn’t hurt in the tournament outcome, only in the disappointment of missed chances.

Park Hill outshot Staley 14-4 but only five of the attempts were on target. Staley put three of four on goal against Trojans goalkeeper Kaela Baack (two saves), including a 46th minute goal from Liz Mann to tie the score at 1-1.

“We got caught a little high,” Bell said. “It wasn’t the end goal that was the problem. It was giving up possession in the middle of the field to give them the opportunity. They converted, and they did what they needed to do.”

Park Hill (5-3-3) still created chances to nearly grab the win in the final minute.

Jenna Winebrenner, a sophomore all-state central defender, moved up late to push for the winning goal and received a pass near the penalty spot. Her shot was on target but had little power and directed straight at the Staley goalkeeper.

“We just needed to pick it up,” Park Hill sophomore Sam Paulak said. “We stepped up. We just couldn’t finish any of our shots in the second half. We were a little frantic instead of playing simple and possessing. We can’t slow down after our first goal. We need to keep it up and keep going for it instead of holding back.”

The draw gave Park Hill four points in the tournament, and after a surprise draw between Smithville and Harrisonville, Park Hill played the hosts in a winner-take-all affair later on Saturday. Three second-half goals buoyed the Trojans who staved off a late rally from the Warriors to claim the tournament title with a 4-2 win.

Madi Massa, Bella Catano, Allie Simpson and Alison Walls each scored once for Park Hill, while Paulak added two assists in the deciding match. Smithville scored twice in the final 15 minutes before the Trojans defense regrouped.

Park Hill, currently receiving votes in the Missouri State High School Soccer Coaches Association Class 4 poll, defeated Harrisonville 2-0 in Friday’s round-robin opener on goals from Rachel England and Massa.

Park Hill South 16, Ruskin 0

Shay Jackson recorded a hat trick in the first 6 minutes, and the Panthers improved to 6-3 on the season with a lopsided one-half win Wednesday, April 8 at Park Hill District Soccer Stadium in Riverside, Mo.

Jackson also tallied two assists, and Park Hill South led 9-0 after just 18 minutes. Mayleigh Oder scored in the 14th and 18th minutes to provide that lead, and Anna Courtney and Meghan Jones tallied one goal each while combining for five assists. The Panthers are 2-0 in Suburban League Red Division play entering a Wednesday, April 14 matchup vs. Truman.

Meghan Jones (eighth minute), Margaret McKeon (eighth), Madi Sanders (ninth), Erica Timmerman (22nd), Kate Eischens (23rd), Nichole Davis (26th), Kallen Mazeitis (29th), Sadie Grigsby (30th), Flannery Koelliker (35th) and Jasmine Crawford (37th) rounded out the goalscorers.

Park Hill South 2, St. Joseph Central 0

The Panthers scored a goal in either half of a Suburban League Red Division matchup Tuesday, April 7 at The Den in St. Joseph, Mo.

Jackson struck first in the 19th minute, and Courtney doubled the lead to 2-0 with a marker in the 51st minute. Overall, Park Hill South forced Central goalkeeper Lia Wickham to make 13 saves. Park Hill South’s Hayley Mills made just one save in a clean-sheet effort.

Platte County 10, Raytown South 0

The Pirates scored five times in each half to invoke the 10-goal mercy rule and win a second straight Suburban League Blue Division matchup Thursday, April 9 in Raytown, Mo.

Brooke Zenner completed a hat trick with a goal in the second half, and Kenzie Polley, Nicole Larson and Hanna Hall all tallied one to help push the advantage out. The Cardinals also were credited with an own goal.

Katana Audas and Zenner both scored twice in the first half, and Calle Boe’s lone goal helped put the Platte County (3-3-1) up 5-0 at the break. The Pirates totaled 31 shots on the way to improving their conference mark to 2-1 on the season.

Platte County 6, Belton 0

The Pirates continued to rotate their goalkeepers, and Anna Watson (three saves) and Kaylyn Hathaway (one) combined to keep a clean sheet Wednesday, April 8 at Pirate Stadium.

Zenner, Polley, Kianna Castro, Bailey Bologna, Kelsey Evans and Amanda Sullivan all tallied one goal apiece. Zenner also notched three assists.

Kearney 4, Platte County 0

The Pirates managed only six shots — all in the second half — in a Blue Division opener loss Tuesday, April 7 in Kearney, Mo. Faith Burchell made six saves.