The McPherson High girls soccer team needed Friday’s consolation semifinal blowout against Augusta.

The McPherson High girls soccer team needed Friday’s consolation semifinal blowout against Augusta.
The Bullpups, who struggled to score in their last two games, opened up the offensive throttle against the Orioles at McPherson Stadium, taking 15 shots on goal in a 5-0 shutdown of Augusta to move into today’s consolation finals against Topeka High School.
“For Paige Schmidt to a goal tonight, Zaida [Chapman] to get a goal tonight,” MHS coach Chris Adrian said, “it just takes that pressure off them where they could relax. You could see that after that first goal, where it was like, ‘OK, we can do this.”
McPherson (2-2) had several opportunities to bust the game open in the first half, as freshman Sydney Ruder nearly missed on scoring two minutes into the match. Schmidt picked up her first goal of the afternoon with 25:48 left in the opening half off an assist from Bailey Holton.
Chapman added a goal four minutes later to make it 2-0 McPherson. Schmidt added her second goal with 13:08 left after Alayna Wallace set her up on a corner kick.
“They were scrappy goals is what I would describe them as,” Bullpup coach Chris Adrian said of the first half. “It wasn’t a lot of build up and passing. We hit a ball to take it from [Augusta] and go score. The second half, it was the opposite, where we were creating and getting tons of chances but we couldn’t get them in the net.”
McPherson did threaten early and often in the second half. Schimdt, in particular, found herself in open field on two different occasions, just missing both. Her third shot of the half came at the 6:25 mark and soared in from 20 yards out to make it 4-0 Bullpups.
“Her speed tonight was great,” Adrian said of Schmidt. “She was able to get around. She was able to hold the play up for us. I thought our midfielders did a good job of distributing and passing. They did a lot of running today.”
Defensively, the Bullpups held the Orioles to zero shots in the second half and only two total for the game. Ruder, in particular, was aggressive in the backfield.
“Sydney Ruder was getting around the outside and getting crosses in,” Adrian said. “That’s a defender getting those crosses in. We haven’t always had that. So she’s bringing a lot of attack to our defense, which is huge because that’s, a lot of the times, not marked when she’s making a run.”
The Bullpups will now face Topeka, who shut out Salina South 4-0 in the other consolation semifinal at the McPherson Invitational. The Bullpups and Trojans get underway at noon.
“I was surprised,” Adrian said of the Topeka/Salina South outcome. “South is a good team, they just didn’t look interested in the game when I was watching. Topeka, you’ve got to give them credit. They’re good and I don’t know if their first game against Hays was their first of the season, but they looked really unorganized the first day. But, today when I watched them, they were solid. They play really good to feet. They do those basic things right. They don’t make a lot of mistakes. We’re going to have to play much better than we did to day when we play Topeka.”
In the championship bracket, Maize South shut down Hays 4-0 to advance into the championship game. They will face Andover Central at 4 p.m., after the Jaguars beat Newton 2-1.
Hays and the Railers kick off at 2 p.m. for third place. Augusta and Salina South play for seventh place at 10 a.m.

Contact Chris Swick by email at and follow him on Twitter @SwickSentinel.