Only a couple weeks into the season, the Jayettes already face an uphill battle. After dropping two games over the weekend — temporarily losing star player Natalie Martinez to a rib injury in the process — a loss to Bondurant-Farrar would be the first time the Jayettes lost three consecutive matches since 2015. All that stood in the way was double overtime, but in the end, the Blue Jays overpowered Perry 3-2 despite the Jayettes storming back from a 2-0 deficit.
Despite the cliche, it was a true tale of two halves for both teams as described by both head coaches.
Perry head coach Gilmar Guerra said that Bondurant was more physical than his Jayettes could manage in the first half, leading to the Blue Jays’ early lead on the back of two Ellie DeCosta goals. Turn the page to the next 40 minutes, and Bondurant coach Jon Paulsen said it was difficult to manage Perry’s quickness.
Past the midpoint through the second half, Perry cut the lead in half with a free kick that went over the goalkeeper’s head. With under four minutes to play, junior Molly Lutmer cut past the defense to even the score.
“We didn’t mark up very well and should have been in front of us,” Paulsen said.
From there, it was a race to three points and had Lutmer’s breakaway four minutes earlier gone into the net, overtime may have been avoided. The same rings true for another Lutmer attempt in the second half, as she broke loose at the seven-minute mark, only to miss the mark and head to extra minutes.
It was moments like those that Martinez’s presence was most missed, but Guerra did not place any blame on her absence. He said while his young roster is helped by those with experience, they need to continue to improve their communication.
“Communication. We’ve got to be talking more,” Guerra commented. “Communicating is hard because they forget everything. So you got [to talk more].”
In the end, the communication broke down in the second overtime as senior Grace Hintz got a leg up on the Perry defense, getting the ball inbounds just as it appeared the clock would hit triple zeroes without a winner. Instead, the Blue Jays took a 3-2 win, looking to start up a new win streak while the Jayettes are in search of their next ‘W.’
With sights on ending this losing streak, Guerra noted how much they’ll need to improve their defense. He joked that Bondurant could have scored 10 times in the first half but with enough touches, Perry avoided falling into an inescapable hole. Before the next game, the head coach said they’ll be working on their defensive pitfalls to avoid a similar situation.
Perry will have a chance to grab their fourth win of the season on Thursday, April 18 against Boone at Dewey Field. Guerra said he doesn’t expect Martinez to be back in time but hopes she’ll be able to play healthy the following Friday on the road against Newton.