After a dominant season-opening win, the Milton High School girls soccer team was met with a harsh reality check.
Milton started off the season with a 6-1 win over Wilmot Union on Tuesday, April 2, in a non-conference game at Wilmot Union High School.
Two days later on Thursday, April 4, the Red Hawks were defeated in their home opener by Sauk Prairie, 10-0, at Milton High School.
“Any loss like that is hard to swallow I think, especially since the last six years we haven’t really been on that end of it,” head coach Kayla Hottinger said. “It’s a little bit of a reality check, especially for the returners.”
Milton 6, Wilmot 1
It did not take long for senior Chloe Buescher, a member of the Badger South’s 2018 first team, to get back into form.
Buescher scored the Red Hawks’ first three goals and had a hat trick by halftime. She scored the first goal of the game in the 2nd minute. The second and third scores both came within the 18 minute mark.
“Chloe has athletic ability you can’t teach,” Hottinger said. “She’s probably one of the most athletic players I’ve ever coached in club or high school.”
“There was a couple times where we played her a through ball, or a ball popped behind their back line and a normal player might not have turned it into a breakaway, but she turns it into breakaways pretty easily because of her speed,” she added.
Junior Shelby Mack-Honold, freshman Kayleigh Boe and senior Makenzie Long all added scores in the win.
“It went pretty well,” Hottinger said. “I was pleased with the overall effort from the girls. A win is a win obviously, you’ll take them when you can get them.”
Sauk Prairie 10, Milton 0
The Red Hawks came back down to earth against the Eagles.
It took a bit of time for Sauk Prairie to score the game’s first goal, but once the Eagles got going they kept rolling.
Sauk Prairie scored the first goal at the 15 minute mark. The Eagles scored six goals from the 27th minute to the 37th minute to take a commanding 7-0 advantage into halftime.
Hottinger said her team does deserve credit though. At halftime, she challenged her team to make it past the 60th minute.
The Eagles scored three more times after the break with the final goal coming in the 73rd minute, which enabled the mercy rule.
“They’re [the returning players] very used to being the team winning 10-0,” Hottinger said. “I think it was sort of a gut check. There is a lot of inexperience. It goes back to our identity, we have no idea what our identity is.”
Milton played Baraboo Tuesday, April 9, at Baraboo High School, but results were not available by publication time. The Red Hawks take on Badger South foe Watertown on Thursday, April 11, at Watertown High School. Game time is 6 p.m.
“The only thing you can do is move on to the next one,” Hottinger said. “I think it stings and it shows how steep of a learning curve we’ll be on.”