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March 25, 2014 8:04 am

Offensive onslaught powers boys to shutout

Written by Dante Geoffrey

PHS senior Tyler Ouellette passes the ball to the wing during Saturday afternoon’s match against Pinedale. Ouellette scored three goals in the Panthers’ 7-0 victory. PHS senior Tyler Ouellette passes the ball to the wing during Saturday afternoon’s match against Pinedale. Ouellette scored three goals in the Panthers’ 7-0 victory. Tribune photo by Dante Geoffrey

Tyler Ouellette nets 3 for panthers in season-opener  

The Wyoming winds were blowing hard as the PHS boys’ soccer team blew out the Pinedale Wranglers 7-0 Saturday afternoon in the Panthers’ season opener.

Tyler Ouellette notched a hat trick, Ty Herd scored twice, and Trey Ouellette and Heston Swenson each had a goal in the one-sided game.

PHS head coach Travis Rapp said the Panthers found a multitude of scoring opportunities “by possessing the ball about 70 percent of the game” and were able to convert those chances with “a lot of speed and some guys that are pretty good finishers.”

Rapp said both Tyler Ouellette and Herd “can score one to two goals a game,” and the Panthers “could average five or six goals a game” with this 2014 team.

Powell kept the Wranglers, who lost to Cody 2-1 the day before, on their heels for the majority of the game.

“We did a good job choosing when to attack and when to pull back,” Rapp said. “We just dictated the game how we wanted to.”

Herd scored what would be the game-winning goal just five minutes into the first half. The junior scored Powell’s second goal 15 minutes later.

Tyler Ouellette gave Powell a 3-0 halftime lead with his first goal at the 29 minute mark. He then opened the second-half scoring with another tally in the 44th minute.

“Tyler could lead the state in goals in both 4A and 3A,” Rapp said. “He’s extremely talented.”

Tyler Ouellette’s third, and Powell’s final, goal came on a breakaway that he finished with a 10-yard shot to the net’s bottom-left corner with 14 minutes remaining in the game.

Trey Ouellette scored on a penalty kick to make it 5-0 and Swenson netted a breakaway goal of his own to put Powell up 6-0 with more than 20 minutes to play.

An apparent second goal by Trey Ouellette wasn’t counted by the referee. His shot from the edge of the goalie box was momentarily caught by the Pinedale keeper behind the goal line but then dropped. The ball bounced well behind the line before being repossessed by the keepers’ hands.

Curious Powell players jogged slowly toward midfield before the ref said, “It’s a goal kick.”

It was a goal that would have provided nice stat-padding for Trey, but was ultimately unneeded in a game dominated by the Panthers.

“I was really pleased with the effort and possession,” Rapp said.

Not only did Powell’s ball control lead to its offensive flurry, but it also prevented Pinedale from sniffing the Panther net.

“I am an offensive coach, but what made me the most happy about that game was the big goose egg we gave them,” Rapp said. “(We are) always looking for a shutout.”

Rapp said Powell’s back line, beginning with senior center-back Noah Katz, did a great job maintaining possession and fending off Pinedale attacks the few times Powell’s defense was threatened.

“When they were tested, they were able to weather it,” Rapp said.

Keeper Sean Wagner wasn’t tested often, but when he was he did everything necessary to maintain a clean sheet. Wagner, a sophomore, missed a week of practice due to being on the boys’ basketball team, and had to earn the starting keeper job.

“He really came in and cemented and solidified that job,” Rapp said. “In that Pinedale game, he came out and won almost every ball in that 6-yard box.

“It shouldn’t be his last shutout of the season.”

It’s hard to nitpick a win as convincing as the boys’ 7-0 shutout, but Rapp said he saw some areas in which Powell can improve.

“We need to tighten our corner kicks both offensively and defensively,” Rapp said.

The coach also wants to improve the team’s defense on free kicks.

With the game out of hand Rapp was able to test his team’s depth and he liked what he saw.

“I pretty much emptied my bench the last 15 minutes, and we still didn’t skip a beat,” the coach said.

Powell played three freshmen (Shattuck Swenson, Brekyn Herd and Josh Schuler) late in the game.

“I thought they did a phenomenal job,” Rapp said.

The Panthers’ JV team did not play because Pinedale does not have a JV squad.

The Powell boys take on Star Valley at 1 p.m. Saturday at Panther Stadium. Due to a scheduling conflict, Friday’s game against Jackson was rescheduled to April 26 at 1 p.m.

 

PHS boys' soccer schedule
MARCH
  22   Pinedalea   7-0 W
  29   Star Valley   1 p.m.
APRIL
  3   Cody   6 p.m.
  4   Worland   5 p.m.
  11   Green River Invite   TBA
  12   Green River Invite   TBA
  22   Cody   6 p.m.
  25   Buffalo   5 p.m.
  26   Jackson   1 p.m.
  29   Worland   6 p.m.
MAY
  2   Lander   6 p.m.
  3   Pinedale   1 p.m.
  9   Star Valley   6 p.m.
  10   Jackson   1 p.m.
  22-24   STATE   TBA
  Overall Record: 1-0; Conference: 0-0

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