West Jessamine blanks Somerset

Caleb Lowndes I CJ

Somerset High School sophomore Grace Bruner (right) attempts to keep possession of the ball during the Lady Jumpers 12th Region Tournament game against West Jessamine on Monday night at Clara Morrow Field.

On paper at least, Somerset and West Jessamine were evenly matched, with both clubs scoring 31 goals in 12 games this season.

The Lady Jumpers -- 6-6 on the year, squared off against the Colts -- 5-6-1 on the season -- in Monday night's first round of the Girl's 12th Regional Soccer Tournament at Clara Morrow Field. And, thanks to a quick goal out of the shoot by visiting West Jessamine, Somerset would come out on the short end of the scoreboard.

The Colts got another first half goal with less than a minute remaining in the first half, and that 2-0 cushion at the intermission would help send West Jessamine into the semi finals of the tourney with a 4-0 victory over Somerset, ending Steve Watkins' club's season with an overall record of 6-7.

"Most sports are probably like that, but in soccer, the first five minutes and the last five minutes of the half are so very important," pointed out Watkins, after his team's season ended with the tough-luck loss to the Colts.

"I told our team at halftime that we're starting two freshmen and a sophomore in the back, and they just played tremendous for us," continued the Somerset head coach. "They played beyond their years easily, because we're coming out tonight against a super coached and very experienced West Jessamine team."

West Jessamine took control early on in this affair, thanks to Diedra Long's goal just 44 seconds into the contest for a quick, 1-0 Colts lead.

After that score, the two clubs played even until just inside one minute left in the half. A goal from Delia Long with only :58 remaining in the first period gave West Jessamine a 2-0 lead at the intermission and a ton of momentum taken into halftime.

"I still liked our chances despite being down at the half, because I felt like we created some chances, but it was one of those games where there were some spurts of some good plays, and then I felt like we got a little tired, and then we got a little sloppy," pointed out Watkins.

A goal from Ashton Wyatt with just over 32 minutes left in the contest extended the Colts lead out to 3-0, and late in the game with 11:09 remaining on the clock, a goal off the foot of Leah Hardin rounded out the scoring, and a 4-0 West Jessamine win.

The loss ended Somerset's season with a won-loss record of 6-7, but Watkins says despite the fact his club will miss seniors Kendall Burgess, Hayley Melton, and Madison Ruble, the Somerset head coach says his program's future is very bright.

"I'm very proud of my group," stated Watkins. "They're a young team, and we had three great seniors that brought a lot to the program and it's going to be tough to watch them go. I'm excited about the youth that we have coming up. We've got some very good middle school players, and I think we have something to build on."

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