Girls soccer: Green Wave's big second half stymie's Lakers, snaps two-game win streak
The Detroit Lakes girls soccer team has had a habit of bouncing back from tough losses all season, and will need to do it again after its 6-0 loss against East Grand Forks on Sept. 27, 2022.
DETROIT LAKES – Every time the Detroit Lakes girls soccer team has been knocked down this fall, it’s found a way to get back up.
On a chilly night at the Rotary Soccer Complex, the Lakers (4-6) suffered a 6-0 loss to Section 8-2A power East Grand Forks (7-2-1) and found themselves staring in the face of adversity once again.
“We learn so much from these games,” senior Kaydence Swiers said. “We learn how to be there for each other and grow stronger. Honestly, losing like this sucks, but I think it makes us stronger as a whole because we come back stronger and harder the next game. We need to come to work tomorrow and be ready to get better.”
The Green Wave got a goal in the 27th minute of the first half. Grace Jordheim buried a pass from Kara Ellis for the game-winning goal.
The last 40 minutes were marred with scoring changes for East Grand Forks, with five of them finding the back of the net.
“I think we need to be faster with the ball and have faster touches,” Swiers said. “We need to do better moving without the ball too. We can’t give up when we get down. We have to keep our heads up–Just find a way to push through.”
Detroit Lakes junior goalkeeper Elle Bettcher was under fire from start to finish. Even in a game where the score got out of hand in the second half, she showed why she’s one of the top keepers in Section 8-2A with a handful of point-blank saves.
“She’s literally amazing. I’m so grateful for her,” Swiers said. “She’s crazy. She plays through everything, whether she’s banged up or we have a tough loss. She plays through everything for us. She works hard.”
To say the Lakers have had a streaky season would be an understatement. After starting the season 0-3, they battled back to 3-4. They dropped their next two before pulling within a game of .500 again before Tuesday. Now, at 4-6, with games against St. Cloud Tech, Hillcrest Lutheran Academy, Bemidji and Moorhead left on the schedule, Detroit Lakes will be tested down the home stretch.
“I have a couple of hard-nosed players for times like this,” Lakers’ head coach Ben Aastuen said. “Elle Bettcher, Maren Skadsem, Kaydence Sweirs, Clara Lundmark– I could say a whole bunch. It’s hard-nosed in the sense that they will take this loss, take this punch in the face and say, ‘We’re going to do something about it.’ It’s fantastic to have those players that feed that into the rest of the team.”
“Keeping our heads up,” Swiers said on the key to bouncing back from tough losses. “We have to have a good attitude about it because, if we don’t, we’re never going to get anywhere. It starts with having a good attitude and working hard in practice. Knowing that it’s OK to fail and wanting to be better from it is important.”
Aastuen got a chance to see some of his younger players on the pitch against a top-flight section team. He said that when they get opportunities to compete against talented programs, they can see what it will take to play at a high level.
“We’ve got some really good young players that show some good stuff,” Aastuen said. “It’s good to get them out on this field so we can show them that difficult level of play. I was actually talking to (assistant coach) Jessica Pudwell about (sophomore) Livi Smith. She hasn’t gotten as much playing time this season due to other people playing. But when she was out there today, she was fantastic. She did such a good job receiving the ball, picking her head up and making a pass.”
For Swiers, the home stretch will be the last of her high school career. She and the rest of the seniors are gearing up for a final playoff run, aiming to set the tone for the next wave of players.
“We’re hard on ourselves–a lot of people are,” Swiers said. “Making sure that people know that it’s going to be OK is important. We’re going to have these games where we’re not going to perform as well. I just want to be a good role model for the younger people.”