By RICK PETERSON
Washburn Rural's boys soccer team saw its Class 6A title hopes come to an end Friday night, with Shawnee Mission West handing Rural a 2-0 semifinal defeat at Hummer Sports Park.
The Vikings scored a goal in both halves en route to handing Rural only its second loss of the season and first against a Kansas opponent as the Junior Blues endured a frustrating offensive night. .
Shawnee Mission West advanced to Saturday's 3 p.m. championship game against Olathe East, a 3-2 overtime winner over Dodge City, while Washburn Rural will play Dodge City in the third-place game at 12 o'clock.
Shawnee Mission West, which improved to 15-3-2, got on the scoreboard at the 21:39 mark of the opening half when senior Phillip Mutantika found the back of the net and that goal held up for a 1-0 halftime advantage.
"That's the sport of soccer,'' veteran Washburn Rural coach Brian Hensyel said. "You've got to finish your chances. We had some in the first half where maybe we could have grabbed the lead and then one of their kids made a special play. That's a top level goal to give them the lead.
"At this level teams are tight and one person has to go finish a play off.''
The biggest play of the night for Rural came early in the second half when an apparent game-tying goal by the Junior Blues was wiped out by an offsides call.
Although the call was a heartbreaker for the 18-2-0 Junior Blues, Hensyel did not question the official's decision.
"The ref down here is one of the best we've got and he's looking right at it,'' Hensyel said. "We'll see it tomorrow (on video tape) but at the end of the day I just have to trust his judgement.''
Shawnee Mission West added an injurance goal from junior Sergio Hernandez Marquez at the 17:26 mark of the second half and the Vikings were able to keep Rural out of the net the rest of the way, with sophomore Luke DeAngelis posting the shutout in goal.
"We started putting more people forward trying to get that tie and eventually they got one going the other way,'' Hensyel said.
Now Rural, which played Friday's late game, faces the tough task of bouncing back in Saturday's third-place game.
"Our expectations are to come here and try to win two games,'' Hensyel said. "The third-place game's tough but we're playing another team that doesn't want to be there tomorrow either. But these guys have a lot of pride, they'll show up.
"It just wasn't our night tonight. Shawnee Mission West's got a nice team and they'll have a good chance tomorrow. We'll rally tomorrow.''
CLASS 6A STATE SOCCER
SHAWNEE MISSION WEST 2, WASHBURN RURAL 0
SM West (15-3-2) 1 1 -- 2
Washburn Rural (18-2-0) 0 0 -- 0
Shawnee Mission West -- Goals: Phillip Mutantika, Sergio Hernandez Marquez. Shutout: Luke DeAngelis.
Olathe East 3, Dodge City 2 OT
Shawnee Mission West 2, .Washburn Rural 0
12 p.m. -- Dodge City vs. Washburn Rural (third place)
.3 -- Olathe East vs. Shawnee Mission West (championship).