SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 14
WOODBURY 1, NORTH ST. PAUL 0
The winning streak improved to nine games as the Woodbury boys' soccer team defeated North St. Paul 1-0 to surge to a 9-0 record to start the season.
It was a an 80-minute battle on Saturday night, but the Royals scored in the first half on a goal by Jake Thomas. That one goal was all Woodbury needed as the defense continued the shutout in the second half led by goalie Austin Williams' six saves.
The Royals are ranked third in the Class AA rankings, according to the Minnesota State High School Soccer Coaches Association, behind Edina and St. Louis Park who are ranked one and two, respectively.
Woodbury will look to make it double digits for the winning streak at 5 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 17, as the Royals host rival East Ridge for a top 10 showdown. Currently, the Raptors are ranked 10th in the same poll.
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 12
WOODBURY 2, IRONDALE 1
The Woodbury boys' soccer team defeated Irondale 2-1 on Thursday for their second conference win of the season.
It was a strong defensive game for the Royals with only one goal allowed in 80 minutes of play. Woodbury was able to score a couple of goals to get the lead and hold onto the win.
The goals came from Gavin Lee and Joseph Haile, while Jake Thomas and Haile each earned an assist.
IRONDALE 1, WOODBURY 0
It was a defensive battle between two conference teams as Irondale and Woodbury faced off in girls' soccer on Thursday night. The Royals weren't able to score resulting in a 1-0 loss.
The loss puts Woodbury's record at 3-3-1 on the season and a 1-2 record in the conference. The Royals will look to even out their conference record on Tuesday, Sept. 17, at 7 p.m. as they host rival East Ridge.
TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 10
WOODBURY 2, MOUNDS VIEW 0
It takes a collective mindset and strong teamwork to start a season 7-0 and that's what the Woodbury boys' soccer team has shown over the last few weeks to stay perfect this season.
They showed it even more on Tuesday night as the Royals defeated Mounds View 2-0 at home in a conference game.
"This wasn't our best game, especially playing a conference game," said Austin Williams. "We were able to work together though and pull out the victory, but we need to learn from this game for our upcoming games."
The two goals by Woodbury came in the first half with a goal from Williams and Asher Kelly. Then, the second half became a defensive battle as Mounds View wasn't able to get the ball into its offensive zone for long periods of time.
"We pride ourselves to be a strong defensive team and it's always a good thing to see a shutout on any night," said Mohammed Musa. "There are always things we can work on as a defense, but ultimately we want to see that zero on the board at the end of the night."
The win puts Woodbury at 7-0 to start the season, which also puts the Royals as the No. 3 team in the Class AA state rankings, according to the Minnesota State High School Soccer Coaches Association. That ranking is nice for the Royals to see, but now they need to keep it.
The winning streak is certainly something they want to keep, but being undefeated isn't the main thing in their heads each game. They like to take one half at a time.
"It's nice to be 7-0 this season, but we want to play our best soccer when the section tournament starts so we can get to the state tournament," said Anthony Wong. "We're just trying to get better individually and as a team during this regular season, so we're ready for the end of the season."
Wong, Musa and Williams are the three captains on the Woodbury boys' soccer team and they all agree that the key to their early success has been the trust and communication between each player.
The majority of these players have been playing soccer together through the Woodbury Athletic Association as kids and also through club soccer programs. They've also been on the varsity team for a few years and they always see each other in the hallways at school and in the classrooms.
"We get together all the time whether it's on the field or in school or in the community," Wong said. "We're all friends and it shows on the field when the game starts."
The three captains agree that there's a different level of communication for the Royals on the field because each player understands each other in a different degree. They know what they're thinking on a specific play and they can get in the right positions to execute in the best possible way.
There's so much trust between the players that a game comes more naturally to each of the players. The players also respect the coaches on the team and continue to learn about the game of soccer through the coaches and their experiences in soccer.
"Many of us have been playing soccer together for a number of years as little kids," Williams said. "That just helps so much more during a game because we understand each other and utilize our strengths more often."
MOUNDS VIEW 3, WOODBURY 1
After a conference win over Forest Lake last week, the Woodbury girls' soccer team was looking for a second straight win to start off the conference season. Unfortunately for the Royals, they weren't able to capture that win as Mounds View earned a 3-1 win on Tuesday night at Woodbury High School.
The Mustangs scored one goal in the first half to take a 1-0 lead. The Royals were looking to gain momentum at the start of the second half, but Mounds View came out firing with a goal about nine minutes into the second half.
That gave the Mustangs a 2-0 lead, but another goal about halfway through the second half gave Mounds View a 3-0 lead and the momentum of the game. Woodbury was able to get one goal late in the game as Megan Hensel found the back of the night.
The Royals return home to take on rival East Ridge on Tuesday, Sept. 17 at 7 p.m.