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Wildcats stay unbeaten with win on Senior Night

Andy Brown / Louisburg Sports Zone

Louisburg seniors (front row, from left) Emma Christy (manager), Weston Frank, Logan Faulkner, Treston Carlson; (back row) Reece Jones, Dylan Armstrong, Caleb Shaughnessy, Dacey Wieland, Luke Faulkner and Haden Yeager were honored prior to their Senior Night match Thursday.

It wasn’t the perfect match, in fact after it was all over, Louisburg head coach Kyle Conley had a list of things to work on for the upcoming practices.

Still, Thursday’s home opener against Basehor-Linwood was special in more ways than one. Not only did the Wildcats pull out a 2-0 win over the Bobcats, they did so in front of dozens of fans despite limitations set forth to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Even better, Louisburg was able to honor their seniors in the proper way as the school moved up Senior Night to its first home match of the season. Weston Frank, Logan Faulkner, Treston Carlson, Reece Jones, Dylan Armstrong, Caleb Shaughnessy, Dacey Wieland, Ethan Showalter, Luke Faulkner, Haden Yeager and manager Emma Christy were all recognized with their parents prior to the match.

Also, all of the seniors in attendance found their way into the starting lineup and made a difference in a Louisburg win that moved the Wildcats to 2-0 on the season.

“It is tough to get minutes with a team of 40 kids,” Conley said. “We kept everyone because we thought it would be important with COVID and everything. It was good to get those all those seniors some reps and have them run around out there a little bit. They played hard and they can hold their heads high.

Senior Haden Yeager wins a 50-50 ball Thursday during the Wildcats’ match with Basehor-Linwood.

“They have done everything that I have asked of them. It is hard to get kids minutes that all deserve it. I know some kids have got shafted because there are so many out. At the same time, it is about being a good leader and playing for your teammates and I think all of these seniors play an important role on this team in one way or another.”

It was a physical contest throughout as both teams had chances on goal, but Louisburg was able to control possession, which turned into more opportunities.

Louisburg put its first shot away midway through the first half when junior Braden Yows threw in from the side, toward the goal. The ball found the foot of Carlson, who tapped it past the Basehor goalie to put the Wildcats up one.

About 10 minutes later, the Wildcats added an insurance goal as Yeager moved up from his midfield spot for a scrum in front of the goal and found the back of the net to give Louisburg a little breathing room.

Although the Wildcats had enough goals to pull away, they also missed their fair share of chances, which Conley hopes can get corrected in practice.

“We had so many good chances, we just weren’t able to get many to go in,” Conley said. “In the final third, we were just not very good. We spent most of the day in practice (Wednesday) finishing in the final third and unfortunately it didn’t look like it. Still, it was great to see Treston and Haden put one away. We are just going to continue to work and we will get better.”

Sophomore goalie Mack Newell makes a save Thursday during the Wildcats’ win against Basehor at home.

The Wildcats were also able to turn away several Bobcats chances, thanks in part to goalie Mack Newell. The Louisburg sophomore made several big saves throughout the course of the match, including two in the second half, and recorded his first-ever shutout.

“Mack has worked his butt off all summer long,” Conley said. “When we have practice he has been working hard, when we haven’t had practice he has continued to work. He is a student of the game. He is still learning and still asking questions. He did a great job and he is a shot stopper. He sees the ball well and has really good hands. I’m really proud of him.”

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