It took a little bit of magic for the Ankeny girls’ soccer team to post a 1-0 victory at Southeast Polk on Monday.
Teja Pritchard scored the game’s only goal on a direct kick with about 15 minutes left. It was the seventh goal of the season for Pritchard, who was assisted by Kennedy Macke.
Pritchard blasted a shot into the upper left corner of the net to break a scoreless tie. Until then, Southeast Polk goalkeeper Kennedy Buntenbach had kept her team in the game with a variety of saves.
“I was worried about playing 100 minutes and (going to) Pks against Ames on Friday and then coming into this game against a Southeast Polk team that is kind of tricky,” said Ankeny coach Simon Brown. “It was a good game. I think we had a 13-1 advantage on shots at halftime. Their keeper is probably one of the best around. She’s going to UNI–she’s very, very good. I think Waukee had 46 shots on Friday and only scored one goal, so they’re very tough to break down.
“It took a little bit of magic from Teja to finally score,” he added.
The ninth-ranked Hawkettes improved to 8-4 on the season. Southeast Polk’s record dropped to 3-8.
Ankeny has now won three straight games since losing back-to-back contests to No. 1 Ankeny Centennial and No. 8 Johnston.
“I think we’ve figured out our goals against issue, but we’re still trying to figure things out with our attack in the offensive third,” Brown said. “But it’s coming along.”
Pritchard’s goal came after the Hawkettes hit the post or the crossbar several times earlier in the game.
“Once we got that goal, all the pressure was gone,” Brown said. “We could just play our game a little bit.”
Ankeny will play another non-conference game on Tuesday, hosting Des Moines Hoover (5-9) at 6 p.m. It will be the Hawkettes’ Senior Night.
“I think the girls are peaking at the right time,” Brown said. “Hopefully, we can get our third win in five days.”