YAKIMA - The Sunnyside High School girls soccer team came out firing in its season opener at Davis last night, but couldn't sustain the momentum in a 5-0 non-league loss.
"The first five minutes were awesome," enthused Lady Grizzly Coach Kathy Jolliff. "We dominated."
Things began to change for Sunnyside, which has just four returning starters from last year, when Davis mounted a counter-attack.
"We had a lack of concentration when they (Davis) came with a counter attack," Jolliff said. "We just made some mistakes defensively and they were able to capitalize."
Fielding a team that includes seven freshmen, the Lady Grizzlies also found difficulty in maintaining a consistent rhythm in their attack.
Of course, it probably didn't help that Sunnyside had to open at Davis, a larger 4A school, who built a 4-0 lead at halftime.
The Lady Grizzlies (0-1) regrouped at halftime and held the hosts to just one goal for the second half.
"The positive note of the game is that we turned it around in the second half," Jolliff observed. "If we can continue that momentum we're going to have a great season."
Jolliff praised a couple of the freshmen who contributed in last night's match.
One was Nicole Palomarez, who is the goalie for the Sunnyside team. "She had some really great saves," Jolliff said, noting the freshman has a natural ability for the keeper position.
Another freshman contributor was Sasha Castro, who Jolliff said "did a nice job in the midfield".
Sunnyside goes right into league play this coming Saturday when it travels to Southridge, and Jolliff is hoping yesterday's opener will give her team some much-needed game experience, especially for the first half.
"Soccer's one of those games where I can't call a timeout," Jolliff said. "I have to wait until halftime to talk to the girls."