LAND O’LAKES — The feels-like temperature Tuesday was in the “no one really feels like playing soccer” range. Despite never fully breaking out of their numbness, nationally ranked Mitchell still pulled off a 7-0 victory at Sunlake.
“I still can’t feel my body,” said Amanda Hayes, who scored two goals — as did Sabrina Wagner and Casey Bruno. Mitchell (18-0) is surely headed for a second straight undefeated regular season with two games left before districts.
Temperatures in the low 40s led to a strange scene. About half the players wore long pants, most had gloves and Mitchell’s Olivia Batshon made it a hat trick by throwing a hoodie on under her jersey.
Hayes nearly had a hat trick in the scoring column. Her first goal was a rarity: a corner kick that went straight in. She lofted it on a high line and the wind gave the ball just enough of a nudge to float it in for a 3-0 lead 20 minutes in.
She scored in the 55th minute, then later clanked one off the post. Bruno had the final two goals while Wagner’s both came in the first half to give her 28 on the season. Baylor Cherry had the other goal, and Noah Stokes had two assists.
It would have easily been a mercy-rule result (8-0) if not for the effort of Sunlake goalie Landon Carter, who made nine saves, several while hurling herself into the air. She also took one off the face to deny Wagner.
“That did not feel good,” Carter said. “But you have to take it if that’s how to keep it out of the net. It was tough to stay warm tonight. I did a lot of jumping up and down.”
Sunlake’s only shot of the first half (Mitchell had 12) came on the last play, during a respectable middle portion of the game in which the Seahawks (13-3-3) mounted some chances. Dariana Tirado had some good hustle plays, freshman Hannah Presson came from the back to create a spark, and Emma Hanyok and Kim Devoe threw themselves into the mix against the powerhouse Mustangs.
The weather kept attendance at a humble 50. Hayes understood.
“I love getting support but honestly, I would not have advised coming out tonight. This was the coldest I’ve ever been,” she said.
Photo: Sunlake senior Emily Higgins, right, wraps a blanket around manager Nicole Sarginger before Tuesday’s game.