Manistee soccer to much for Reed City

By Martin Slagter

Pioneer News Network

REED CITY — It might not look good on the scoreboard, but Reed City soccer coach Bryan Hall is continuing to see one positive that he’s seen all year from his team: Solid defense.

Despite a 4-0 setback to Manistee on Wednesday, the Coyotes managed to keep the game close throughout, tightly contesting the ball when the Chippewas were on the attack.

“We’re losing big, but we’ve been playing solid defensively,” he said. “We’re just not controlling the midfield. We’re stopping them in front of the goal. Obviously when you do that, they’re within shooting range.”

When Manistee’s Desiree Maidens-Sedelmaier got those shots at close range, she put them out of reach during a three goal, one assist afternoon.

Hall said the reason Maidens-Sedelmaier was able to get such quality shot opportunities came down to his team not winning balls at midfield, leading to plenty of short-range attempts among the Chippewas’ 19 shots.

“We were getting beat to the ball,” Hall said. “So we don’t win that possession. That was happening at a lot of different positions for us, but primarily the midfield.”

After a Lindsey Ridderman cross to Kalee Hensel ended with a shot going high in front of Manistee’s goal, Maidens-Sedelmaier split the defense and beat RayAnne Sheldon to make it 1-0 with 25:34 left in the first half.

Maidens-Sedelmaier then found Allie Mallison on a nice crossing pass to make it 2-0 with 19:14 left in the half.

Manistee (5-5-2) coach Rudy Guillen said he likes the way his team is communicating on the offensive attack during its recent three-game win streak.

“We’ve been working a lot on attacking formations in practice,” he said. “I think we did a nice job of getting good touches and playing well in space. We were very unselfish in the box.”

No player has bought into that philosophy more than Maidens-Sedelmaier, who has embraced the role of facilitator in her senior season as team captain.

“In my first three years on the team I scored a lot of goals but only had three assists total,” she said. “I’ve already got five this year. It’s not always fun being the one who scores, I like to get others involved.”

Hall said his team didn’t have an answer for Maidens-Sedelmaier on Wednesday.

“She has very good ball skills,” he said. “That’s hard to defend. We really didn’t have an answer, so a couple of players pick her up as she moves in (on the attack). The biggest thing is to deny her the ball, which we didn’t do.”

Maidens-Sedelmaier would score again to close out the first half when she gained control of a loose ball in front of the net and knocked it in with 58 seconds left in the half.

She then collected a hat trick with 29:05 left in the game to make it 4-0.

Reed City, which managed six shots for the game, had a few chances to get on the board, none perhaps bigger than a crossing pass from Ridderman to Hensel with 14:58 remaining, but Manistee’s Candice Coyle came up with the stop.

Guillen said he believes his team is playing some of its best soccer heading into a tough challenge on Friday at Whitehall.

“Granted, it’s always nice to win, but I think this (win) streak has given us some confidence,” he said. “We’re going to need to continue to play well if we’re going to have a chance (against Whitehall).”

Reed City is in action Friday when it travels to Shelby.

Visit the photo gallery to see more photos from this game.