The Woodside Priory girls' soccer team came out tentative in its first-ever appearance in the Central Coast Section Division III finals, and the Panthers' lack of aggressiveness at the start eventually cost them a 1-0 loss to Scotts Valley on Tuesday at Valley Christian.
The No. 4 Panthers (17-7), who saw their 16-game win streak end, played great -- once No. 2 Scotts Valley took the lead in the 22nd minute of the second half.
"It took a goal to get us going," lamented Priory coach Damian Cohen, in his first CCS final with the Panthers. "But, that's youth and inexperience. This was a game we should have won."
Priory dominated from the start and did everything right but score. The Panthers had at least five good chances to score in the opening 40 minutes. Instead of coming out with momentum and aggressiveness in the second half, it was the Falcons who turned aggressor.
Scotts Valley finally scored when a high-bouncing through ball got past all but one Priory defender. Panthers' goalie Dani Boross sat back in the cage instead of charging out, and by the time she moved forward to stop the shot, the ball was by her.
Priory came alive after that, with two good misses with 14:42 left to play, a one-on-one miss by sophomore scoring leader Massiel Castellanos at the 13:08 mark, followed by a missed corner and a missed long throwin, plus a hard shot by senior Cami Simpson that went wide left with 9:48 to play.
The Panthers continued to push and had 3-4 good opportunities that missed in the final two minutes.