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PANTHERS BLANK COUGARS IN SEASON FINALE

The Guam High Panthers played host to the Academy Cougars Saturday evening as the Panthers got another stellar performance from sophomore Kayla Kinney in a shutout victory over the Cougars.

By Jeffrey Ochavillo

The Guam High Panthers played host to the Academy Cougars Saturday evening as the Panthers got another stellar performance from sophomore Kayla Kinney in a 4-0 shutout victory over the Cougars. With a very slow start in the first half, the Guam High Panthers sparked up the in the second half to hold off the Academy Cougars.

There was no guaranteed winner from the looks of the first half. Both teams found it very difficult to get the ball moving from one player to another causing to make errors and bad shooting attempts as shots continuously hit the goal post.

The Cougars did not let the score get the best of them. Andrea Odell, Mia Santos, and Morgan Quinley all worked together to avoid the shutout, but the Panther defense proved stout all game long especially goalie Gessie Gonzalez.

However, it wasn’t until after halftime when the Panthers ignited together and started to get things moving starting with Kinney taking the lead by getting the first goal of the game with no more than 5 minutes in the 2nd half.

Guam High Player Of The Game Kayla Kinney who scored three goals against Academy. (photo by Joey Blas)

Guam High Player Of The Game Kayla Kinney who scored three goals against Academy. (photo by Joey Blas)

“It felt like a huge burden off my shoulders,” said Kayla about her first goal in the game. “

After a good clear from the defense, Kinney dribbled down the sideline where she burned past a Cougar defender and was able to get some room to stop on top of the penalty area and launch the ball to the net past the goalkeeper to make the score 1-0.

In less than five minutes in, Kinney was moved into the right-side corner where she split two Cougar defenders and was able to get wiggle room to launch another right foot beauty to the goal to increase the lead 2-0.

The Cougars fought hard despite trailing. Even though their main keeper Mya Sanchez was out serving a one-game suspension after drawing a red card against the Sanchez Sharks, the Cougars were still able to get a few deflections and good attempts.

Given a free kick off a foul, Odell kicked the ball over the defenders getting it into the penalty area but the Cougar forwards couldn’t find position to put the ball in the goal. Gonzalez dove for the catch right before the ball had gotten past her and into the goal.

With the second halfway finished the Panthers weren’t finished as Kayla Keeney and her teammate, Meagan Guerrero, got two more in before the whistling of the final game.

As an Academy defender tried to drop the ball back to the goalie, Kinney came swooping in and took the ball before it got to the keeper where she was alone with an empty goal to just tap the ball in give her a hat trick and making the score 3-0

Finally, Panthers’ Guererro had full control of the ball as she maneuvered through the defense and was able to trip her defender and kick the ball high enough over the keeper making the final score 4-0.

“We just needed to keep playing as a team and get the passes to the player it was supposed to be at,” said Kinney about her team’s performance today. “Overall, we played great together and played beautifully and that helped bring us the win.”

With the win, the Panthers tied their record with the Cougars at 7-1-2. But since the Panthers beat the Cougars in the regular season, the Panthers are ranked first and the Cougars are ranked second in the standings.

With playoffs starting to make its way, Kinney said, “I feel that there’s a lot of competition this year and I feel that any team can win it. We just have to keep playing our game the way we played it.” Coach Ed Paz says, “Every teams’ mindsets will be the same. Season records don’t matter, it’s whoever wins and puts in the most work will take.”

PHOTO GALLERY

Andrea Odell heads the ball and takes control of the possession of the ball. (photo by Joey Blas)

Andrea Odell heads the ball and takes control of the possession of the ball. (photo by Joey Blas)

Academy Andrea tries to get the kick past Guam High defenders, Guam High goalie makes a nice stop at the net. (photo by Joey Blas)

Academy’s Andrea Odell tries to get the kick past Guam High defenders, Guam High goalie Gessie Gonzalez makes a nice stop at the net. (photo by Joey Blas)

Academy Serena Bordallo takes a shot at the goal, but it goes far right of the goal post. (photo by Joey Blas)

Academy Serena Bordallo takes a shot at the goal, but it goes far right of the goal post. (photo by Joey Blas)

Academy Goalie goes up to the front of the box and makes a nice diving stop. (photo by Joey Blas)

Academy goalie goes up to the front of the box and makes a nice diving stop. (photo by Joey Blas)

Academy Raven-Dion Aguon was able to clear the ball towards midfield.(photo by Joey Blas)

Academy’s Raven-Dion Aguon was able to clear the ball towards midfield. (photo by Joey Blas)

Guam High Meagan Guerrero goes up and heads the inbound to an open teammate. (photo by Joey Blas)

Guam High’s Meagan Guerrero goes up and heads the inbound pass to an open teammate. (photo by Joey Blas)

Academy Andrea and Guam High Kaeliana battle for possession of the ball. (photo by Joey Blas)

Andrea Odell (AOLG) and Keliana Yatar (GH) battle for possession of the ball. (photo by Joey Blas)

Academy Kaeliana Yatar makes a nice defensive play to prevent Guam High from advancing to their goal. (photo by Joey Blas)

Academy’s defender makes a nice defensive play to prevent Guam High from advancing to their goal. (photo by Joey Blas)

Academy Andrea Odell heads the ball and passes to an open teammate in the midfield. (photo by Joey Blas)

Academy’s Andrea Odell heads the ball and passes to an open teammate in the midfield. (photo by Joey Blas)

Guam High Meagan Guerrero takes a shot at the goal during the first half. (photo by Joey Blas)

Guam High Meagan Guerrero takes a shot at the goal during the first half. (photo by Joey Blas)

Guam High Anna Armel heads the ball down field. (Photo by: Joey Blas)

Guam High Anna Armel heads the ball down field. (Photo by: Joey Blas)

Guam High Meagan Guerrero shoots it past academy keeper for her first and only goal of the game in the second half. (photo by Joey Blas)

Guam High Meagan Guerrero shoots it past academy keeper for her first and only goal of the game in the second half. (photo by Joey Blas)

Guam High Kayla Kinney scores her third goal of the game for the hat trick. (photo by Joey Blas)

Guam High’s Kayla Kinney scores her third goal of the game for the hat trick. (photo by Joey Blas)

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