Jays power through rain, wind to notch win over St. Mary's
The Jamestown High School girls soccer team faced off against Bismarck St. Mary's on April 29 in Jamestown.
Not even a deluge and 15 mile per hour winds could dampen Sara Sletto’s spirits Friday night.
The sophomore defender from the Jamestown High School girls soccer team was all smiles as she chest bumped her teammates halfway through the team’s WDA matchup against Bismarck St. Mary’s.
“I am just really excited to be back on the field," Sletto said. "Soccer is my whole life and being with this team just makes all of my days better."
A win always makes an athlete's day better too.
Sletto helped the Jays put up a rock solid defense that led the Jays to a 3-0 win over the Saints to improve to 2-4 in conference play.
"Once we were up I was just excited to finally be winning," Sletto said. "We haven't had the best situations in some past games but today I was really excited to get some goals and get going and things just kind of fell into place."
Jamestown is slated to be back in action on Saturday against Williston at the University of Jamestown’s Jimmie Turf Field. The matchup is slated to begin at 3 p.m.
The Jays’ first appearance at Rotary Field is scheduled for Tuesday evening against Bismarck High.
While Sletto was not credited with any of the Jays scoring plays, the sophomore made a series of plays in the midfield that helped keep a slippery, rain-sodden ball out of the hands of Blue Jay goalie Olivia Sorlie.
"Our midfield was really on point tonight," Sorlie said. "They kept their shape and it really helped us out a lot. We were also all talking a lot and that really helped too."
Sletto is a fourth-year starter for the Jays ‘ varsity squad, largely, head coach Haley Hillstrom said, because of her ability to communicate, innate leadership skills and aggressiveness on the field.
"She's great," Hillstrom said of Sletto. "She played a great game today she was really talking, kept the back line together and got a few off-sides calls which is really big for us.
"It's key for that back line to have someone who knows what they are doing and a big voice that will talk to them. She's great in the air, is super aware on the field and has a great mentality."
The sophomore was out for two weeks last season due to COVID-19 protocol, an event that prevented her from practicing with her team or attending games.
The setback only made her stronger.
After coming back from the protocol, Sletto helped get the 2021 Blue Jay squad back to the state tournament where she managed to pick up individual All-WDA honors for her freshman year performance.
Since last June, Sletto has been spending a lot of time in the weight room and participating in open gyms as well as conditioning and training on her own time.
All the work Sletto has put into the off-season was a big reason the Jays out-possessed the Saints for a good portion of the game Friday.
The hometown team knocked in three goals by the time halftime rolled around. The Jays outshot their opponents 11-5.
Sorlie made two saves.
Haley Nelson was the one who wound up breaking the ice in the Jays’ sop fest with about 11 minutes off the clock, the senior sent in a corner kick that got away from Madison Schate to record the Jays first goal since the team’s battle against Bismarck Century on April 19.
With 15 minutes to go in the first half, Claire Frohlich tapped in the Blue Jays second goal of the game, on a breakaway.
Peyton Waliser followed up Frohlich's breakaway with one of her own to give the Jays their biggest lead of the season.
The second half was less than stellar for scoring opportunities as the wind picked up, the temperature dropped and the rain kept soaking the field.
Still, it was just exciting for the Jays to see the ball land in the net.
"We can always do better but I am really hoping that it will start picking up and after this game, I am really excited to see what the rest of the season brings," Sletto said.
Jamestown 3, St. Mary’s 0
SM 0 0 — 0
JHS 3 0 — 3
1. JHS, Haley Nelson (unassisted), 11th minute; 2. JHS, Claire Frohlich (unassisted), 24th minute; 3. JHS, Peyton Waliser (unassisted), 26th minute.
Shots on goal: St. Mary’s 5; Jamestown 11
Goalie saves: St. Mary’s, Madison Schate 8; Jamestown, Olivia Sorlie 2.
Records: St. Mary’s 0-5 WDA, 0-5 overall; Jamestown 2-4 WDA, 2-4 overall