WEST JEFFERSON — The Watauga Pioneers scored two goals in the final 20 minutes of Friday’s game to give the Lady Huskies their third consecutive 2-1 loss to start the season.
Much of the first half was a lot possession play for both teams. The Pioneers did get a pair of shots on goal in the 33rd and 35th minutes, but for the most part, scoring chances were very limited.
It was a different story in the second half. It took Ashe just 10 minutes to finally break the scoreless tie. Off of a corner kick, Alyssa Peterson was in the right place at the right time to put a shot by the Watauga keeper to put Ashe in front, 1-0.
In the 55th minute, Ashe almost had a 2-0 lead but thanks to a nice save, a shot from Valerie Keys was held on to and moved out of harm’s way.
Two minutes later, Watauga was given a free kick off of a penalty, but the Ashe defense stood tall and cleared the ball out of the scoring box.
In the 60th minute, the Pioneers were able to come up with the tying score. Kass Alvarez got a shot by Ashe County goal keeper Izzy Alvarez to knot things up at 1-1.
Both teams traded corner kick chances in the 61st and 66th minutes with neither team able to find the go-ahead score.
In the 72nd minute, Karson Hamrick was able to get through the Ashe defense and find the back of the net for Watauga.
Ashe did not go down without a fight, nearly coming up with the equalizer on a corner kick with a minute left, but could not get a shot by the Watauga keeper.
The Lady Huskies dropped to 0-3 while Watauga improved to 1-1-1.
“We’ve played three good teams very close,” said Ashe County head coach Wes Rousseau. “For us to be a great team, we have got to learn how to finish games.”
Ashe has held a 1-0 lead in two of its three games to start the year.
The resilient Husky squad will have to finish the rest of the season without starting goal keeper Jade Hannewald. She broke her arm in last Wednesday’s game against Hibriten and will be out for the remainder of the season.
Ashe will travel to Mount Airy on Thursday and host Avery on Friday. Mount Airy starts this week with a 3-2-1 overall record while the Avery Lady Vikings enter play this week with a 5-1 record.
Nathan Ham can be reached at 336-489-3062 or followed on Twitter @NathanHam87