May 2, 2014 - By Craig Blumenshine, Staff WriterIf you missed the first 30 seconds of Thursday's Riverton girls soccer match against the Casper Natrona Fillies, you missed the hole the Lady Wolverines dug themselves.
RHS allowed a quick Natrona score that gave the Fillies early momentum on their way to a 3-1 Class 4-A West win over Riverton at Wolverine Field.
As tough as the start of the match was for Riverton, it could have been much worse, had it not been for keeper Maci Evans's saves of four point-blank shots the Fillies blasted toward her in the first 20 minutes.
But as the first half wore on, Riverton's play improved. Jordan Shells drew a foul on the NC defense, and Savannah Salisbury buried the subsequent direct kick to get Riverton on the board in the 22nd minute.
"Maci did a good job coming out to defend. We still had lots of time to catch up at that point (after the first NC goal). We weren't quite engaged and ready to go. It was definitely frustrating," Riverton head coach Tanya Santee said.
Riverton (4-10-1, 2-4-1 Class 4-A West) goes to Casper Kelly Walsh Saturday for a rematch with the Lady Trojans. Earlier this year, Kelly Walsh beat Riverton at home 2-1 in a game the Lady Wolverines felt they should have won.
Natrona added a penalty kick in the second half, the only score for either team in the second half.
"It was a legitimate call for sure. But I felt really good with the way we came out in the second half. We controlled the ball well at the beginning, but until we can shut down the middle... that is a really talented team in our conference. We found a way to adjust," Santee said.
Salisbury had a second direct kick opportunity in the second half but wasn't able to convert.
After Saturday's match in Casper, Riverton will have two final conference games remaining against Evanston and Green River prior to hosting the Class 4-A regional tournament in Riverton on May 16-17.
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