Jaiden Boomsma picked up right where she left off last season.
So too did her team.
Especially after halftime.
Three goals after halftime — and a Boomsma hat trick — helped spark Yankton to a season-opening 4-1 victory over Sioux Falls Lincoln in girls’ soccer action Friday at Crane-Youngworth Field.
“We’re definitely a second half team,” said Boomsma, who scored three goals after notching a program-record 16 a year ago.
“We didn’t want that tie again, and I think our conditioning really helped us in the second half.”
That second-half surge was nothing new for the Gazlles.
It’s become a trend, according to head coach Tyler Schuring.
“That’s been one thing with this team for the past seven years,” said Schuring, whose Gazelles reached the state tournament semifinals last year.
“We always come out solid in the first half and just maintain, but the second half is really when this team turns it on.”
Boomsma’s goal with eight minutes remaining in the first half gave Yankton a 1-0 cushion at the break.
Lincoln’s Hannah Cisar then tied the game with a tie at the 29:55 mark of the second half.
From there, though, Yankton took control.
Boomsma scored on a penalty kick at the 26:28 mark, junior Megan Cap then scored off a deflection at the 21:02 mark and Boomsma scored on a header with 10:37 remaining.
There was an addition sense of urgency for the Gazelles given that last year’s matchup with Lincoln ended in a 0-0 tie, according to Boomsma.
“We didn’t know what to expect after last year, but we just wanted to finish strong and get that first game over with,” she said.
Yankton began to control the pace after halftime and the result was immediate, Boomsma added.
“I think it showed in the second half,” she said. “We were more relaxed.”
A year after winning the Eastern South Dakota Conference title and capturing a program-record 11 victories, the Gazelles got 2019 off on the right foot, Boomsma said.
“After that first game, you have that excitement, and especially knowing that we can beat really good teams like that,” Boomsma said.
The win over Lincoln could also loom large later in the season, Schuring added.
“That’s a very solid first win,” he said. “That’s a team (Lincoln) that will have a lot of wins this season, and this win over them will really help us with the power points.”
Yankton returns to action next Tuesday at Harrisburg, for a 6 p.m. start.
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