Royals close regular season with .500 record

The Watertown-Mayer boys’ soccer team closed out the regular season last week, splitting a pair of games to finish with an 8-8 record heading into the Section 6A playoffs. The Royals opened the final week of the regular season with a 3-1 loss to PACT Charter School, but rebounded with a 4-3 win over Mayer Lutheran, the third time this season the Royals have beaten the Crusaders.

“I would say it was a good record and a good season,” Watertown-Mayer coach Jeff Shults said. “I’m satisfied with our 8-8 record, and our players got good experience.”

The week started against PACT, when Matt Scanlon’s first-half goal, assisted by Nick Hix, gave Watertown-Mayer a 1-0 lead. However PACT answered with three goals before halftime to take a 3-1 lead. Shults used the opportunity to give some more players playing time in the second half that haven’t gotten as much so far this season.

“It was good experience for them, and good preparation,” Shults said. “Everybody got a chance to participate in the game, and everybody was working really hard.”

The Royals were back in action two nights later against Mayer Lutheran, when the Royals took a 3-1 lead in the first half and eventually held on for a 4-3 win. A penalty kick in the second half allowed Mayer Lutheran to close to within 4-3, but the Royals held them off down the stretch to clinch a .500 record for the season.
Hix led Watertown-Mayer with two goals and an assist, Mitchell Sullivan also had a goal, and Josh Loomis notched his first goal of the season to go with 11 assists so far. Scanlon and Nick DeNomme also had assists for the Royals.

Shults also announced two new captains last week, adding DeNomme and Hix to the four existing captains: Scanlon, Loomis, Brandon Kuntz and Dan Raiter. Those players led Watertown-Mayer into their playoff opener Tuesday night at Orono. If the 12th-seeded Royals managed to pull of an upset, they would play again on Thursday against either fourth-seeded Holy Family Catholic or 13th-seeded Rockford, with the higher seed hosting.

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