QUICKSBURG — Stonewall Jackson fought back to take a second-half lead on Tuesday only to see it slip away in the final 10 minutes.
The Generals lost 3-2 to Page County in Shenandoah District boys soccer action.
“We’ve played better,” Stonewall Jackson’s Andrew Lute said. “I think we came in a little big-headed about it since we beat them the last time.”
The Generals beat the Panthers, 6-0, on March 29, but Stonewall Jackson coach Matt Burgwald said Page County has improved and he didn’t think his team overlooked the Panthers.
“They played well,” Burgwald said of Page County. “They’ve had a lot of improvements since when we played them at their home. So we just have to power through.”
The Generals (7-6) trailed 1-0 at the half, but Burgwald said he made some adjustments at the half that helped in the second half.
The ball bounced around in front of the goal and Stonewall Jackson defender Chase Goble was there to put it in to make it 1-1 with 22 minutes left.
Less than a minute later, Lute took a pass from Goble and put it past Page County goalkeeper Trent Kite for a 2-1 lead.
With 16 minutes left in the game, Stonewall Jackson goalkeeper Christian Hess slipped as he was trying to make a play on the ball on a corner kick and Page County’s Dalton Campbell hit it past him to tie the game at 2-2.
With about 10 minutes left, Page County’s Jared Melini lofted a ball perfectly over Hess’ head for a 3-2 lead. Burgwald said there was a lapse in their defense, which he was trying to adjust to just as the goal happened.
“I saw a hiccup in our lineup that we were adjusting for right at the last 10 minutes,” Burgwald said. “Unfortunately it was just a little too late.”
Page County took an early lead. Melini drilled a shot past Hess with 37 minutes left in the first half.
The Generals had plenty of chances to score in the opening half. They controlled possession throughout the first half and outshot the Panthers, 13-3. For the game, the Generals outshot the Panthers, 41-7.
“The finishing left a lot to be desired,” Burgwald said.
The Generals are still in good shape for the postseason, as they are currently ranked second in Region 1B. Stonewall Jackson plays at Stuarts Draft today and Lute said the team has to move on from Tuesday’s loss.
“We need to forget about this game,” Lute said. “We got another one on Friday and we got to keep our heads up for that one.”