Bulldog soccer teams fall to Bison

GREAT FALLS — Butte High’s soccer team really could have used that Great Falls Jamboree.

Six days after the jamboree was canceled because of smoke, Butte High returned to Great Falls for the season-opening games Thursday. Butte High’s girls fell 1-0, while the boys’ team dropped a 4-2 decision.

Both Butte High head coaches said their teams showed promise but struggled with some first-game jitters.

“Once we get that goal in, they’re all going to go in,” Butte High girls’ coach Kevin Petritz said. “It’s going to pour goals.”

The Bulldogs actually found the back of the net once, but Mackenzie Collins’ goal was called back by an off-sides penalty.

Petritz pointed out that Butte High outshot the Bison.

“We got off 10 or so, and I think about three or four were on goal,” he said. “We had a lot of chances.”

Along with Collins, Petritz pointed to the play of Jessica Rosa, Marti Ludwick Allison Collins, Ally Cleverly, Camile McEwen and  Jori Sholey. He said goal keeper Meaghan Weisenfles held up well on her first career varsity game.

Weisenfels was one of three freshmen who started for the Bulldogs. Cleverly and Ludwick were the other two. Freshman Lexie Kautzman also saw time for the Bulldogs.

“We played really well,” Petritz said. “That one goal was a weird mistake early in the second half.”

Butte High’s boys fell behind 2-0 in the first half. They battled back to tie the match at 2 with 10 minutes left, only to see the Bison find the net twice in the game’s final 5 minutes.

Bulldog boys’ coach Eric Zahler called it was a tail of two halves on the cold and rainy day.

“There were a lot of nerves,” the coach said. “It took them a little while to settle in and get comfortable.”

Zahler said the Bulldogs were outshot 10-0 in the first half.

Bock Powell scored Butte High’s first goal. Zach Archibald got the assist. Eric Todd found the net for the second goal on an assist from Trevyn Roth.

“We made the right adjustments,” Zahler said. “Things just didn’t work out for us in the end.”

Zahler pointed to the play of Andrew Howrey, Sean Staples, Nick Werkmeister and Roth.

He said his team also gained confidence with its play in the second half.

“They know that they were the better team after halftime,” Zahler said.

The Bulldogs will be back in action Saturday when they play host to Great Falls Russell at the Jeremy Bullock Complex.

The boys play at 11 a.m., while the girls begin at 1 p.m.

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