BURNSVILLE, NC – The Murphy High Bulldogs soccer squad played well for all 80 minutes Monday, Sept. 23, but a few plays that could have went either way ended up going against them in a 3-1 loss to Mountain Heritage in Burnsville.
The team had several opportunities to score but couldn’t finish them, and on defense had just a few mental breakdowns that were taken advantage of by Mountain Heritage.
The Bulldogs (1-3) trailed the Cougars (2-0-1) by just one goal at 1-0 heading into halftime, but the defense couldn’t keep the home team from finding the back of the net two more times in the second.
Head coach Justin Butler said his team played hard the entire game but still have gaps in the defense and aren’t finishing in the box like they should.
“The guys played well overall. We need to tighten up defensively and continue to do a better job of finishing our scoring opportunities when we get them,” Butler said.
The Bulldogs seemed destined to score several times in the match with runs into the box but just couldn’t make the final pass or strike to get them in the goal.
Murphy did manage to benefit from one converted scoring opportunity as Jason Butler struck on a set piece in the 48th minute.
Physical conditioning and a short bench continue to be serious concerns for coach Justin Butler, as his team has nearly a dozen players leaving very few chances for rest and virtually no chance to come out of the game.
This contributed to the Bulldogs giving up two goals in the second half, but Butler feels like his team can learn to overcome that and not make mistakes when they are tired.