Despite playing good soccer this season, the Briar Jumpers have struggled to put the ball into the nets, Those woes continued on Tuesday night in the All "A" 12th Region final 2-0 loss to Danville.
"We have struggled to put the ball in the goal the whole year," stated Somerset boys soccer coach Brian Blankenship. "We had great looks tonight and, honestly, I thought we gave them (Danville) a great game."
"We played with intensity, we played with heart, we played for one another and we put it out there, but we are just not getting the results," Blankenship stated. "I love my players, but is seems like we are on the bad luck of some of these losses. We have earned a few of these games, but the shots are just not falling for us. It feels like at some point it should start going our way."
For the game, Somerset outshot Danville 15 to 14.
Somerset High School junior keeper Pancho Zaragoza made three straight saves in a 11-minute span midway in the opening half that kept the game knotted at null. Zaragoza stepped into the keeper position with no experience after Dylan Jasper was injured earlier in the season.
"He is our back-up keeper and he has played great since he has been in," Blankenship stated. "He has kind of amazed us all because you can tell he is a natural athlete but he is amazing with his positioning and he is rarely out of position. He has learned so much and he saved our butts a few times tonight."
Zaragoza had 10 saves on the night.
However, Danville put their first score on the board on a penalty kick by Gabe Cisneros in the 29th minute.
Three minutes later, Danville's Briar Sanders crossed to Sam Lynch to give the Admirals a 2-0 lead.
Those two Danville first-half goals stood up for the rest of the game despite several close misses bu the Briar Jumpers.
Late in the opening half, Somerset senior Tommy Wombles had two good attempts off free kicks - the first one from left side of the box in the 35th minute, and the second came on a 40-yarder attempt.
In the first minute of the second half, Somerset's Derek Arias made a perfect cross to Carlos Fernando, who just missed the goal high.
In the 46th minutes, Tommy Wombles missed wide on a close-range crossing shot.
In the 49th minute, Danville had goal erased for running into keeper Pancho Zaragoza.
In the 55th minute, Danville had another goal called off on an off-sides violation.
Fernando took a shot at goal from 15 yards out in the 68th minute, but it was saved by Danville keeper Keeton Burnside. Somerset junior Max Heuer drilled a 38-yard laser at the Danville keeper.
Somerset lost in the All "A" Region Championship last season to Danville, and the Ads ended the Briar Jumpers' 2018 season in the 12th Region semifinals.
Somerset (2-6) will play in the Thoroughbred Cup this weekend in Owensboro, Ky.
STEVE CORNELIUS is the CJ Sports Editor and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at @CJSportseditor.