If Millard West coach Frank Ryan is going to get that elusive first state title, his Wildcats will need to do it the hard way.
Millard West lost 8-2 to Millard South in a first-round game Saturday, dropping the Wildcats into the losers bracket. Ryan, who has guided his teams to six runner-up finishes at state, is retiring at the end of this school year.
Patriots coach Greg Geary, who played for Ryan at Millard South, said he had to put those thoughts aside when squaring off against his mentor.
“Frank is a wonderful man,” Geary said. “But in this situation, you have to forget about those thoughts and just try to win.”
Ryan has led the Wildcats to the state tourney 18 times.
Avoiding the rain ... almost
Fans from the first game to the last Saturday at Werner Park were keeping their eyes on the skies, but rain bypassed the stadium most of the day.
The final game between Lincoln Southeast and Lincoln Southwest was suspended because of impending stormy weather.
The state soccer tournament wasn’t so fortunate on the rain front, enduring two delays.
Coach gets heave-ho
An assistant coach for Lincoln Southeast had to leave Saturday night’s game early after getting ejected by the first base umpire.
The assistant complained when Lincoln Southwest first baseman Mitch Conklin dropped the ball at the end of a double play. The ump ruled Conklin made the putout and had dropped the ball tranferring it to his throwing hand.
At least one Southeast fan wasn’t ready to forget that play, either. The first base ump called time during the next inning and sent one fan packing.