With a huge Suburban Middle Six Conference game looming against Staley tonight, it would have been easy for the Fort Osage girls soccer team to overlook Wednesday’s game against North Kansas City.
That didn’t happen.
Fort Osage got two goals each from freshman sensation Aliyah Ayala and senior Emma Hogland as they rolled to a 6-2 victory at Northgate Middle School.
The 15-1 Indians improved to 8-0 in the conference and sit in first place in the Middle Six. The game against the second-place Falcons (7-1 in the conference) will likely determine if they win the conference outright or end up sharing the conference title. A win today clinches the crown.
“The girls are pretty motivated to have the (conference championship) by themselves,” Fort Osage coach Michael Brown said. “We still have Ruskin after (Staley). It’s the last time we are going to play Staley because they are moving up in the conference. That gives us a lot of motivation.”
Fort Osage junior forward Megan Lyon agreed with Brown.
“We have the talent and the skills (to win the conference),” Lyon said. “We just need to get in the right mindset for the game (against Staley).”
It’s hard to fault the Indians’ confidence when it comes to winning the conference. They have outscored opponents by a combined score of 108-11.
Fort Osage got off to a slow start against the Hornets but rebounded nicely in the second half. North Kansa City’s Ellie Super scored in the eighth minute to give Northtown a 1-0 lead.
The Indians took over from there.
“Practices have been pretty slow the past few weeks,” Lyon said. “We warmed up pretty slow and came out slow. It took us a first and second goal to really pick things up.”
A pass from Lyon st up Hogland’s goal in the 23rd minute for the tie. Hogland later broke the tie when she made a penalty kick for a 2-1 advantage going into halftime.
“She’s a player that doesn’t get as much recognition as she deserves,” Lyon said of Hogland. “She’s a phenomenal player. She keeps the team up.”
Added Brown of Hogland: “She is so consistent. Every day, you know what you’re going to get out of her. She trains hard and works hard in the game. To have that consistency and rock in the midfield is awesome. When the team needed someone to step up and take the lead, she did.”
Ayala scored the team’s next two goals, which included a penalty kick and a goal off an assist from Karlee Tatum. Sophia Smith and Lyon notched goals to cap the scoring for Fort Osage.