MIDDLE POINT- The Lincolnview Lancers took on the Lima Central Catholic Thunderbirds in boys soccer on Tuesday night at Lincolnview High School. It was a hard-fought match for both teams that resulted in a 2-0 victory for LCC.
The first half was an even match between both teams, as neither could score a goal. Both teams were evenly-matched on the offensive end, as Lincolnview had six shots-on-goal and the Thunderbirds had seven.
Both teams’ play were led by their goalkeepers: Mark Evans for Lincolnview and Ben Stechschulte for the Thunderbirds.
The Lancers had the best opportunities to score a goal in the first half when both Kade Carey and Nick Leeth made runs at Stechschulte but he bested them both times and keep the match scoreless.
The second half started out with more of the same from both squads. Lincolnview got the ball to start the second but a more aggressive LCC came out and dominated time of possession.
With less than 15 minutes left and the match looking like it was going end in a tie, LCC caught a break when junior Sean Daley sent a shot toward the goal and it deflected off a Lancer defender, which prevented Evans from stopping the shot; with 12:20 left, LCC took a 1-0 lead over the Lancers.
With seconds left before the end, LCC added a second goal off the foot of Jacob Williams to account for the final score.
In the second half, LCC did a better job of controlling the ball, allowing only three shots-on-goal for the Lancers compared to 10 of their own.
“I thought we played a good game; great game, actually. They got a goal that come off of us that our goalie couldn’t get - kind of a lucky goal by them,” Lancer coach Mark McCleery said. “Otherwise, I thought we played them pretty even. Towards the end of the game, our midfielders got a little tired and ran out of gas, which opened up the last goal for them.
“We got two seniors up there that are aggressive, strong and fast and towards the end of the game, they weren’t able to bring the same level of energy.”
LCC coach Bryan Burkholder had good things to say about the Lancers after the game: “This is the best Lincolnivew team I have ever seen skill-wise and conduct-wise. They had us on our heels the first half and we made the corrections we needed to in the second half, which made the difference in the second part of the match. We changed our attack to from just sending the ball over the defense and when we made the changes at halftime, we decided to go with more of a short pass to attack the defense. It paid off in the second half with two goals.”
The Lancers dropped to 5-4-1 on the season and LCC improves to 5-5-1 on the season.
Both return to action Thursday: Lincolnview hosting Woodland and LCC welcoming in Botkins.