After a heartbreaking bi-district loss outside Wylie’s Pirate Stadium Thursday night (March 29), a weary and somewhat hoarse Wildcats Soccer Coach Nicky Wiggins said his team played with passion and heart and gave it everything they had in the 2-1 loss to Lovejoy. Coach Wiggins said the Wildcats gave the Leopards all they wanted.
The Wildcats also earned some respect from the winning team. Coach Wiggins said Lovejoy was very respectful after the game was over telling some Wildcats’ players how appreciative they were to have played an opponent like the Wildcats. They encouraged the Wildcats to keep their heads up. Coach Wiggins said he couldn’t be prouder of his team.
He admitted his team had trouble possessing the ball at the beginning of the game. A Leopard shot that hit the post but did not go in seemed to wake up the Wildcats. Coach Wiggins said it dawned on the Wildcats that they better get busy and play. He said the intense game was about as even a soccer game as he’s seen. Coach Wiggins said his team left it all out on the field. A case in point was what happened after Lovejoy’s first goal at 26:31 in the second half. 32 seconds later the Wildcats got the equalizing goal. Coach Wiggins, making a gut decision and seeking some fresh legs, had put Ricardo Torres into the game. Torres, a sophomore, had been a JV player all season. He crossed a ball to Enrique Arellano who scored for the Wildcats to tie the score. It remained that way until the Leopards scored the leading goal with just 2:18 left in the second half.
The game was the last one for 14 Wildcats’ senior. Coach Wiggins admitted his team would look a lot different next year. He’s been giving young players playing time all season to prepare for the future. Coach Wiggins added the Wildcats’ JV was good this season.