Story and photos by Chet Piotrowski

Mahomet-Seymour came out and showed they’re still the dominant girls soccer team in the Apollo Conference Thursday afternoon.

The Bulldogs (8-0, 4-0 Apollo) came away with a clean sheet in defeating Mattoon (8-4, 2-1 Apollo), 6-0.

Senior striker Cayla Koerner tallied four goals in the match. The Southeast Missouri commit netted the first score of the match, and then three in a row late in the second half.

“I think it was a pretty good game,” Mahomet-Seymour soccer coach Jeremy Davis said. “Mattoon did a really good job in the mid. They have two players in 10 and 14 (Lily Ghere and Faith Niebrugge) that were causing some issues for us and had to adjust around them.”

Mattoon soccer coach Ryan Ghere praised Koerner after her 4-goal performance.

“There’s no one on our schedule that’s as good as number nine (Koerner),” Mattoon varsity soccer coach Ryan Ghere said. “She can do everything – breakaway speed, turnaround and fire a shot with no space, get teammates involved, shes the real deal. She’s good.”

Koerner opened the scoring on a penalty kick against Green Wave goalkeeper Averie Smith due to a hand foul in the box, giving the Bulldogs a 1-0 lead. Senior midfielder Brea Benson put another Mahomet-Seymour tally up late in the first half giving the visitors a 2-0 lead.

The Green Wave came out in the second half and again controlled the offensive possession for the first 20 minutes before relenting to the Bulldogs.

“I thought they outplayed us the first ten minutes of the second half and we tried some new formations with people,” Davis said. “At first it didn’t go so well then we tried another thing.”

He said the Green Wave made the Bulldogs adjust more than any opponent they’ve faced so far this season.

“I thought 10 and 14 put pressure on our back line and we haven’t had that as much,” he said. “Cayla did pretty great up top. She caused them some problems on their backline.”

Mahomet-Seymour’s Cayla Koerner dribbles away from Mattoon’s Piper Sanders during their match at Mattoon High School Thursday afternoon.

Koerner came back in the second half and scored three straight for Mahomet-Seymour, getting loose after a clear out by goalkeeper Grace Larson.

“We made an adjustment and had Marley Vanhoven mark (her),” Ghere said. “I thought she did an outstanding job in the second half. We were supposed to double-team her when she got it, but we never sent the double-team there.

“We just tried to contain her. We did for a while and then bang, bang, bang three goals in the last fifteen minutes.”

Davis said the pressure by Ghere and Niebrugge forced them to adjust moreso than in any other game.

“We haven’t had to adjust too much to some teams, but it is one of those you’d like to have a couple different looks depending on how the game is going,” he said.”

Davis said it was helpful win.

“I thought it was good for what we needed today.”

Mattoon players need to start believing in themselves, Ghere said.

“The first twenty minutes of the second half we played right there with them,” he said. “The first 15 minutes of the game we had the ball on the offensive end. I thought we competed with them. I’m not into moral victories. I think we have to start believing teams that are that good. I’m not sure that we do.”