By Bruce Sayler
Helena High simply clicked.
The Bengals used and polished an innovative offense for a relentless attack, and the defense was miserly.
Butte High was overwhelmed. Helena High blanked the Bulldogs 9-0 Tuesday in a Western AA Conference high school girls’ soccer match at Bulldog Memorial Stadium.
The Bengals shared the ball and honed their plays, some not so common. They made good use of short drop-off passes for screened plays and were also accurate on long shots from 20 yards or farther away from the goal.
Butte High attackers seldom saw their scoring end of the field and got off only two shots on goal. Helena High took 39 shots as peppered Bulldog goalkeepers Jessie LaPier (in the first half) and Jessie Trudgeon (after halftime) were busy, brave and collected an array of wonderous saves. Thirty of the Bengals’ shots didn’t snare net.
The Bengals were athletic, head coach Hunter Terry calling them “track stars,” and sisters Logan and Madilyn Todorovich led the way. They also had multiple wins at the state Class AA high school track meet held last spring in the same facility.
Logan Todorovich kicked in a hat trick and her sister parked two goals. Madilyn Todorovich assisted Logan Todorovich on one score, a leading downfield breakaway opportunity for the third tally of the game. It came with 14 minutes, 37 seconds left in the first half.
Jayka DeLude scored the first goal on a long launch with the assist coming from Sam Hilton. Logan Todorovich then cut toward the front of the goal from the right side where Avery Kraft dribbled, the dished the short pass. Todorovich booted it in and the Bengals led 2-0 barely more than three minutes into the game.
After the Todorovich-to-Todorovich goal, Mia Melton dealt an assist for Logan Todorovich’s third straight goal. Kraft sandwiched two goals around Madilyn Todorovich’s for a 7-0 lead. The Hiltons each assisted on Bengals owned their 8-0 halftime command.
The score remained as such until late in the game when Madilyn Todorovich struck from 20 yards on an assist from Sam Hilton. Little more than three minutes were left in the match.
Terry, a Butte native and former Butte High player and coach, is at his fourth Class AA assignment with this first year at the Helena High girls’ team helm. He has gone from Butte, to C.M. Russell in Great Falls, to Bozeman High to Helena High and found success at each. He has coached boys’ teams, as well as girls’ squads, at times along the way.
Kierra Case played spirited defense for Butte High while Catherine Sholey, Aydin Gonzales and Autumn Silk were among the other leaders in play for the Bulldogs.
The Butte High teams will play at Helena Capital on Thursday.