PANAMA CITY — Hunter Ginn’s ability to place the ball in the back of the net is the perfect fit for Mosley’s possession-centric system implemented by first-year coach Ryan Rogers.
Ginn scored a goal in each half to power the Dolphins to a 2-0 victory over Bay in a District 2-3A boys soccer game at Tommy Oliver Stadium on Tuesday night.
Mosley improved to 6-0-1 overall with the win. Bay slipped to 2-3-1, including 0-1-1 in district play. Mosley’s district record was unavailable.
Ginn, a junior, was able to corral a long pass from teammate Alex Burgans from midfield, and he used his right foot to nudge the ball past Bay goalkeeper Zachary Watson for a one-goal lead in the 12th minute.
“He just saw an open space and he looked up and saw the ball needed to be there,” Ginn said. “He sent the ball right where it needed to be.”
That lead held up through halftime, and Ginn doubled the margin in the 65th minute with a gorgeous strike from 25 yards out from the right side of the field after a pass from Banton Price. The ball sailed too high for Watson to turn it away, and the ball settled inside the left post in the side netting to provide the final margin.
“I couldn’t see the goalie,” Ginn said. “I just wanted to put the ball where he wasn’t.”
“He naturally has a nose for the goal,” added Rogers, a Mosley alum who has played with the Panama City Beach Pirates semipro soccer team the past two seasons. “It’s what he loves about the game. He’s come through in some big moments for us, and he tonight he played a huge role.”
The Dolphins flustered Bay with a game plan heavy on controlling possession of the ball. Mosley still has room to improve in terms of sharpness, but the Dolphins were able to build an attack out of its defensive backfield and generate shots on goal.
“It’s a tough thing, especially from the level we’re coming from,” Rogers said. “Most high school teams have a hard time playing this system, but these guys have bought into it. I’m lucky with this group of guys that they want to play in this system and are getting better.”
Ginn said he and his teammates are acclimating themselves to the style of play Rogers wants to see on the field. The team relies on quick, accurate passes to get the defense on its heels, and the Dolphins are not shy about putting the ball on net once they infringe upon the opponent’s 18-yard box.
“He’s a really good coach, and he pushes us very hard,” Ginn said. “It’s working because we’re undefeated so far. We want to be able to possess the ball when we have it, and we want to possess it when we don’t. (Rogers) is a good role model for us, and he definitely pushes us to our limits. There’s never any slack. But he’s been through the same things we have.”
Bay tried to counter Mosley with the fleet-footed tandem of Jacob Morrow and Michael Layfield. Those two players were able to press Mosley’s defense with their speed, but neither player was able to get a quality strike on the ball to finagle it past Mosley goalkeeper Alex Gentili.