It did not take for Maryville to take control Tuesday night
against the Lenoir City Lady Panthers at Panthers Stadium.
The Lady Rebels scored just over
two minutes into the game, then again just under nine minutes in.
"When you give up a soft
ball like we did at the beginning of the game, it sets the tone and everyone gets demoralized,"
Lenoir City head coach Gary Rigatti said. "We didn't create any opportunities. Our defense and our
midfield just has to understand how to play more as a unit. I'm very disappointed."
City gave up a third goal with about 18 minutes left in the first half after a scrum in front of the
Lady Panthers' goal ended in Maryville's favor.
The Lady Panthers lost 4-1 in their opener
against Knoxville Catholic, but Rigatti said he thought they played better.
"I thought we
played a Catholic team, which I thought is a much better team than Maryville, and we played them
fairly tough for a little bit," he said. "I went and watched (Maryville) play against Bearden. The
way we played against Catholic and what they did, I thought we had a chance."
In the second
half Lenoir City played Maryville to a draw, which Rigatti said was better. However, the Lady
Panthers failed to generate any offensive push, never really threatening the Maryville
Part of the problem was wasted possessions. On multiple occasions the Lady
Panthers cleared balls up field with no real end goal, well past any attacking player for the
"We don't get any points for kicking the ball up field as hard as you can, because it
doesn't get you anything," Rigatti said. "It's something we have to work on.
"I've got some
talented forwards, our backs can be okay," he said. "Right now we're struggling to find some
identity in the midfield. I tried different combinations there in the second half and messed around
a little bit. We have Loudon and William Blount the next two games so I'll probably keep
experimenting with that and see what I can find."
The Lady Panthers will play at 6 p.m.
Thursday at Loudon. They return home at 6 p.m. Tuesday against William Blount, beginning a
three-game home stand.