Ponderosa takes soccer win over ThunderRidge

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Colton Carr racked up six points for Ponderosa, but he didn't kick two field goals.

Carr, the Mustangs' senior midfielder who doubles as the placekicker for the football team, scored three second-half goals to lead Ponderosa to a 3-0 Continental League soccer victory over ThunderRidge Sept. 24 at Sports Authority Stadium.

His three goals, worth six points in soccer statistics, were too much for ThunderRidge to overcome in a match in which it didn't appear for a while that either team would score.

Ponderosa had a few good scoring opportunities in the first half, but two shots sailed wide, and ThunderRidge keeper Andrew Lundberg made an excellent save on an attempt by Mustangs forward David Patterson.

“The first half was pretty frustrating because I felt like we did really good and we had good chances,” said Carr. “I felt we should have been up at half. Coming out in the second half we had intensity and that was important.”

Ponderosa coach Jim Engels had a productive talk with his team at halftime.

“We kind of go in spurts. We're not super consistent and don't play a full 80 minutes,” said Engels. “I felt like we should have been up two or three at half. I think if you play enough offense and press them enough you are going to score eventually.

“We had those chances, one (versus) ones on the keeper, but we just didn't finish them. The keeper made one good save and missed the other two. We talked a little at halftime and got Colton to get a little more active. Something worked because he got three goals.”

Matt Goodrich, Lars Peterson and Patterson were credited with assists on Carr's three goals.

Carr spends about 20 minutes working with the Ponderosa special teams at football practice during a typical non-game day, and then goes to soccer practice.

“I like both sports,” said Carr. “I just like playing, I like to compete. Your steps have to be right on for you to have a good kick in football. In soccer you can have any kind of steps you want.

“I've had to block a little bit, but not really tackle anyone in a football game. I've had to push people off of me, get around them but I haven't really got hit. I've been hit in practice but I haven't hit someone yet.”

Ponderosa's soccer team is hoping to be a hit in the Class 4A soccer playoffs this season.

The Mustangs, 7-2 and 5-1 in the Class 5A Continental League, followed the ThunderRidge victory with a 4-0 conquest of Heritage Sept. 26.

Carr had two goals and an assist against the Eagles, while Peterson and Cameron Knox had the other two goals.

“I've been here 14 years at Ponderosa and this is the most talented team we've had,” said Engels. “They play well together. They are progressing but still have to be more consistent. We're getting there slowly.

“We got upset in the playoffs last year; our goal is to get in there and make a long run. Every one of our games in this league is tough. We are getting better. We need to work on a few things.”

Carr, who has converted 17 extra-point kicks and made a 36-yard field goal for the Ponderosa football team, has nine goals and two assists for 20 points in nine soccer games.

“We're playing really good and together with passes and quick touches,” Carr said. “We are playing some good 5A teams so we'll have some good practice when we go into the playoffs in 4A.”

ThunderRidge, 3-6 and 2-4 in league play, recovered from the Ponderosa loss and whipped Chaparral 4-1 on Sept. 26.

Jacob Sloan, Colin McIllece, Kyle Henry and Erick Meza scored for the Grizzlies.