The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

Sports

September 17, 2012

High school soccer: Lewisburg strikes for three in second half

MIDDLEBURG — With Midd-West goalie Austin Hockenbroch running toward him and the ball, Lewisburg’s Max Reed knew he had to take a quick shot.

The Green Dragon let the ball fly as Hockenbroch dove for it. The two fell to the ground with Reed doing what he could to avoid the keeper.

Sprawled on the ground at the Middleburg Sports Booster Athletic Park, Reed had no idea he had scored. His slow-rolling goal to the lower left corner of the net gave unbeaten Lewisburg the final margin in a 3-1 victory over Midd-West in a HAC I boys soccer match.

The Green Dragons (6-0-1, 6-0-1 HAC I) and Mustangs (3-4-0, 2-3-0) each played solid in a scoreless first half. Each team had its share of chances but couldn’t execute.

“I think the first half was pretty even, but in the second half we started to work as a team a little better,” Reed said. “We started to bring passes together and I think that made the difference.”

Lewisburg dominated in the second half, giving up just one shot on goal and out shooting the Mustangs 14-4. However, Quinton Davis put in a header from 6 yards to give the Mustangs a 1-0 lead with 35:13 to play.

Midd-West’s advantage was short-lived as Lewisburg’s Udoka Eze responded with a goal just 46 seconds later.

“Sometimes you need a little of that adversity, that little bit of ‘what kind of team are you?’ and you need to show that you can step up and when you’re down, tie the game and then take the lead,” first-year Lewisburg coach Skip Kratzer said. “I think it was good for them. It was good to see that their heads didn’t go down. They just had that much more determination and came right back and scored one.”

Midd-West’s back line made plays throughout the second half to keep Lewisburg from going ahead for awhile. But Jacob Lightman gave the Green Dragons their first lead with 18:12 to play.

Lightman got a pass from Branson Ferster across the field and, standing about 5 yards out, hit a perfect shot past Hockenbroch to find the back of the goal, putting the Green Dragons ahead 2-1.

“We just lost so many 1-v-1 battles all over the field that it’s hard to get anything going,” Midd-West coach Chris Sauer said. “A couple times in second half we did a better job of making choices to keep ball, possessed a little bit better in midfield which gave us a little bit more in the flow of the game. But we’re not going to beat anybody when we lose all those 1-v-1 battles.

“The way (the Green Dragons) play, they possessed the ball a little bit, but they like to play long balls to their targets. If you can’t defend somebody 1-v-1, then it’s not going to happen.”

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