Mid-Prairie rolls on to sub-state finals
Mid-Prairie cruised to a postseason victory on Thursday night, and now are only 80 minutes from achieving the goal the team set out for at the beginning of the year.
“(State) would be a dream come true,” Mid-Prairie senior captain Austin Errthum said. “We’ve been working hard for four years and haven’t quite gotten it, but if we got there, that would make our year right there.”
The Golden Hawks rolled to a 7-0 victory over Chariton in a second-round sub-state game that advances Mid-Prairie to the sub-state final to face Albia.
“It’s awesome,” Golden Hawks’ head coach Pat Cady said. “The guys are playing soccer like they need to play. Having one week off makes you a little nervous as a coach. There’s that possibility that you could go flat and we hadn’t seen these teams play. On Tuesday we went to IMS and saw (Chariton) play, and you take your evaluations and it was good to see the kids come out (and play well).”
Errthum kicked off the scoring in the game, scoring on a direct kick 15 minutes into the game.
“It was about 25 yards out and the wall was way to my right,” Errthum said. “There was probably only one guy covering the goal so I just knew that if I put it on frame, it would go in because I knew the goalie wasn’t really paying attention either.”
Cady said that when he saw the defensive set up for the kick, he knew the ball was going to go in.
“The first direct kick Austin took, when their goalkeeper was lining everyone up, I knew he had that because he’s left-footed and they set it up for a right-footed kicker,” Cady said. “I knew when the ref blew the whistle that it was in because the wall was in the wrong spot.”
Nick Stimson and Dayton Hall put balls in the net to extend the Mid-Prairie lead to 3-0 going into halftime.
In the second half, a shot by Wyatt Cady was deflected in off the back of a Chariton defender, then Errthum netted his second of the game to make it 5-0.
Dustin Yoder and Jarrett Truitt both picked up goals as well, as Mid-Prairie advanced with a shutout victory.
“Our defense has played great all year,” Pat Cady said. “We don’t like to boot the ball and give it up. We like to pass it out, move the ball back, spread out and get the ball up the field. (Chariton) started running out of gas early in the second half because they were chasing everything we were passing.”
In the game the Golden Hawks spread the scoring around with six different players contributing to the scoring effort.
“That’s what we were lacking last year,” Cady said. “Last year it was only Wyatt and Austin that were scoring and that was a point of emphasis when we lost last year to keep us from going to state. More of us have to be able to score because we have to be dangerous everywhere. In practices, we are making sure everyone is taking shots, and if you look at the stats, we have a lot of guys who have scored this year.”
Next up for Mid-Prairie is Albia, who defeated Williamsburg on Thursday 7-1. Albia and Mid-Prairie met earlier in the year with the Golden Hawks picking up the 2-0 road victory.
“We know our competition a little bit; we’ve been watching some film on them too,” Errthum said. “We know they are going to be aggressive and we’ll know who their threats are. We’ll go hard on Saturday and the goal is state.”
The game is set for a noon start on Saturday in Wellman.