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A moment of bad luck ended up proving costly for Preston’s girls soccer team in its district opener.

A Preston defender slipped in the 18-yard box with the ball at her feet, with no opposing player around her. The ball hit her arm and Pocatello was awarded a penalty kick. The Thunder converted from the penalty spot with 10 minutes remaining in the second half and that was the difference in a 2-1 victory over the visiting Indians on Monday afternoon.

“Shouldn’t have came down to that, though,” Preston head coach Brandon Lyon said. “Still plagued a bit by inconsistency. We have good stretches and then some not so good stretches. And in those good stretches, we aren’t taking advantage of our opportunities.”

Tessa Hyde scored for defending district and 4A state champion Preston (3-5-0, 0-1-0) in the first half when she headed in an Andie Bell corner kick. Hyde’s goal was the equalizer, inasmuch as Pocatello (5-3-2, 1-0-0) netted its first goal earlier in the half off what Lyon called “a well-taken free kick.”

It was also a rough day for the Preston boys, which lost at home to Pocatello by a 2-0 scoreline. Blake Brown found the back of the net once in each half for the Thunder (6-2-0, 1-0-0). It was Preston’s (3-5-1, 0-1-0) third straight setback.

It’s a busy week for both Preston sides as the Indians take the pitch against district rival Century on Wednesday and Sugar-Salem on Saturday. Both Preston teams will host Sugar-Salem, while the girls are at home against Century and the boys will travel to Pocatello for a showdown against the reigning district champions.

Jason Turner is a sports reporter for The Herald Journal. He can be reached at jturner@hjnews.com or 435-792-7237.

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