Reed City defeats Big Rapids, but Cards take trophy in soccer tourney

BIG RAPIDS — Big Rapids came away with a trophy in its home girls soccer invitational on Saturday. But Reed City came away with its first taste of victory for the season.

Both teams were 1-2 in Saturday action, with Reed City claiming a 2-1 win against the Cardinals in the final match of the day at Top Taggart Field.

Tri-County went 3-0 to take first place. Sparta was also 1-2 to create a three-way tie for the runner-up spot. But Big Rapids took the second-place trophy based on goal differential.

All four teams played three games featuring a pair of 25-minute halves in each one.

Lindsey Kienitz and Makenzie Switzer scored goals for the Coyotes.

“It’s always a good win, the first one of the season,” Reed City coach Bryan Hall said. “Even though it’s just a scrimmage, it feels good. It’s a confidence boost, of course. It  gives the girls a lot of hope. It’s fun to win in Big Rapids.”

Hannah Davis scored midway in the first half to give the Cardinals a 1-0 lead. The Coyotes missed on some opportunities but cashed in late in the half on Kienitz’s goal.

Both teams had second-half chances with goalkeepers Anna Sieffert for Big Rapids and Brenna Westhoff for Reed City holding back the respective offenses. With just over two minutes to play, Switzer scored and the Coyotes were able to seal the win.

Hall praised the number of offensive attacks his team mounted. “We haven’t had a lot of that,” he said. “We’re getting more and more. Obviously, you have to have that in order to score goals. The girls were putting some passes together and finishing on them. It all equals a couple of goals and a win.”

Reed City had lost to Tri -County, 4-0, and Sparta, 2-0, in previous rounds.

“It feels good this being our first win of the season, and having it be Big Rapids,” said Coyote senior Karah Hensel, pointing to a 2-0 loss to the Cards earlier in the season. “We moved some stuff around at the beginning of the season and we’re working more as a team. It’s been happening a lot the last couple of weeks and we’ve been working on it a lot in practice.”

“We didn’t play the way we’re capable of,” Big Rapids coach Curt Ray said. “Hats off to Reed City. They played to win.”

Reed City was scheduled to host Big Rapids in a CSAA game on Tuesday of this week and then be at Tri-County Thursday.