Soccer - Boys Junior Varsity
vs. The Hotchkiss School
|Date:||September 21, 2013|
After a good week of practice that included tying the boys’ varsity reserves in a short scrimmage, the Bears entered Saturday’s game against Hotchkiss eager to strut their stuff. While the Bears were able to control possession in the first half, we struggled against the wind to advance the ball into the danger zone. Co-captain Alden Boldt ’14, Andre Bogdanovic ’15, Henry Manley ’15, and Connor Shalleck ’16 all played some fantastic defense to prevent Hotchkiss from gaining much forward momentum. The four starting defenders also did a nice job of playing the ball wide to our wingers and supporting our center midfielders. We did generate a few fantastic opportunities as the half wore on, including a phenomenal run by striker Chris Zaffanella ‘15 to the top of the 18. His pace and a defender pushed him too deep into the 18-yard box and his shot went into the side netting. Wingers Jared Renzi ’16 and Rawson Clough ’17 also made some good runs down the wing and were able to connect with deep crosses but were foiled by the Hotchkiss keeper. We also earned several free kicks which midfielder Gerry Gimenez-Valdez ’15 struck well into the 18 yard box. One kick rebounded to a well-positioned Chris Kreke ’15 who wound up and unleashed a volley from 25 yards out. His strike look destined for goal but hit the post and rebounded to a Hotchkiss player. The Bears were knocking on the door, and it looked like we might squeak a goal in before half. Unfortunately, it was not to be as Hotchkiss caught us on a quick transition with five minutes left in the half. A well-played through ball down the wing was crossed back and chipped over keeper Liam Thor’s ’17 head. It was only the second shot on goal we’d given up in the half.
After a 10-minute half, the Bears took the field with the wind at our back. The second half saw the team generate some significant scoring opportunities that we just couldn’t seem to finish. Striker Zack Buteux ’16 made a great run to the penalty spot on a cross and caused a handball by a Hotchkiss defender. Unfortunately, we missed the target on the penalty. Only minutes later striker Jason Tao ’16 headed a ball over the cross bar from within the six, and co-captain Pete Warsinske ’14 struck the post. We had over ten shots on target in the second half but just couldn’t find the back of the net. Keeper Henry Thomas ’16 kept the Bears in the game by coming off his line with a great save in the final minutes. He showed some of the necessary aggression all good keepers exhibit. Overall, it was a great match to watch and highlighted some good soccer from both teams. Thanks to all of the support from the parents. A long run on Monday, quick practice on Tuesday, and then we face Kent at home on Wednesday.