BILLINGS — Talk about a major turnaround.
Brock Powell scored off a Kyle Rauch assist in the 75th minute Friday, and the Butte High Bulldogs beat Billings Senior 1-0 in an Eastern AA match.
“That’s last year’s conference champs,” Butte High coach Eric Zahler pointed out. He also pointed out that Senior routed Butte High in both meetings last season.
“They put up like 20 goals on us in two games last season,” Zahler said. “I think they beat us 10-0 twice. That’s a big turnaround.”
Keeper Erik Rosa pitched his third shutout in as many games for the Bulldogs (3-1-1 overall, 2-0-1 conference). Butte High has not given up a goal in three conference matches this season.
Zahler pointed to the play of Brandon Quinn, who played all 80 minutes on the Bulldog backline.
“He played phenomenally well,” Zahler said.
The Butte High coach also singled out the play of Trevyn Roth, Travis Williams and Eric “Toad” Todd on the back end.
“Our entire back line just played phenomenal,” Zahler said.
As the Bulldogs turn their attention to Saturday’s 1 p.m. game against Billings Skyview in Billings (the boys and girls play at the same time), Zahler can’t help but like what he sees in his team.
“They’re playing really well right now,” Zahler said. “They just keep improving. Whenever you think they reached their maximum potential, they reach for more. It’s great to see.”
In the girls’ match, the Bulldogs fell 7-0 to the Broncs. Senior scored six of those goals in the first half.
Butte High girls’ coach Kevin Petritz said he challenged his team to pitch a shutout in the second half.
“For 36 minutes we had a shutout against a team that was really pressing us,” Petritz said. “The kids never game up, and we can build on that.”
Butte High’s girls fell to 0-4-1 overall and 0-2-1in conference. But the Bulldogs will look at the bright spots on Friday as they turn their focus toward Saturday.
“We’re going to take a good second half against Senior into tomorrow against Skyview,” Petritz said. “We’re going to work to make something of this weekend.”