Heading into the soccer season, the Jefferson City Jays saw an early three-game stretch that would be a good test to see what kind of team they were.
"We came out of those three games 2-1 and that's about as much as we could have asked for," Jays coach Eddie Horn said after Jefferson City dropped a 1-0 decision Saturday afternoon to the Quincy (Ill.) Blue Devils at the 179 Soccer Park. "Overall, I'm pretty pleased with the way we've played in the last three."
Jefferson City, which defeated a pair of state-ranked teams - Marquette (2-1 in PKs) and Rolla (2-1) - before losing Saturday, came from behind to win those contests.
But a third comeback wasn't to be.
"Soccer is too hard, you can't keep falling behind early and expecting to recover," Horn said.
The lone goal of the game came about 15 minutes into the first half when the Jays were called for a foul in the box against a player who had his back to the goal. Hunter Hoschar of the Blue Devils converted the ensuing penalty kick and that was it for the scoring.
"It was the right call," Horn said.
Horn thought his team altered its style after the goal.
"Once we got behind, it almost felt like it turned into an individual game," he said. "We weren't moving the ball fast enough, we were holding onto it too long and they were able to catch up and put numbers behind the ball. So we never had any really good chances."
Jefferson City finished with an 11-7 edge in shots.
"We had our moments where we played pretty well," Horn said. "But there wasn't anything in the final third of the field that was dangerous for us at all," Horn said.
Jefferson City (4-1) is off until the Capital City Invitational that starts Friday at the 179 Soccer Park.
Saturday's junior varsity game between Jefferson City and Quincy ended scoreless.
In the C team contest, Jefferson City was a 3-1 winner. Lucilo Avilo had two goals for the Jays (2-0), while Daunte Tillman tallied the other.