La Plata boys soc­cer blanks Calvert in sea­son opener

War­riors boys soc­cer blanks Cava­liers

Maryland Independent - - Front Page - By TED BLACK tblack@somd­news.com

In the min­utes af­ter de­feat­ing vis­it­ing Calvert High School 3-0 on Tues­day evening in a South­ern Mary­land Ath­letic Con­fer­ence non­di­vi­sion con­test, La Plata High School head boys soc­cer coach Chris But­ler ad­mit­ted the team’s pos­si­ble re­turn trip to the Class 2A state fi­nals was still in the dis­tant fu­ture.

La Plata (1-0 over­all) got one goal each from Rob­bie DeLozier, an­other from Justin Caron and ben­e­fited from a for­tu­itous bounce in the wan­ing sec­onds of the first half when Seth DePri­est-Kessler sent in a deep cross that was headed into the goal by Calvert’s Car­son Myles for an own goal.

“I know this team made it to the state fi­nals last year and we have high hopes of get­ting back there,” said But­ler, in the fifth year of his sec­ond stint at the helm of the pro­gram af­ter coach­ing for five sea­sons dur­ing his first time through. “We grad­u­ated some key play­ers, but these guys re­main fo­cused on get­ting back to Loy­ola [Univer­sity in Bal­ti­more, site of the state fi­nals]. That’s still a long way off.”

La Plata was slated to travel to Leonard­town on Thurs­day in an early sea­son con­test that But­ler ad­mit­ted would be a gen­uine mea­sur­ing stick for his re­turn­ing play­ers. The War­riors have al­ready been in­formed that The Wash­ing­ton Post has al­ready dubbed the Raiders as the 2016 SMAC cham­pi­ons, but But­ler was not about to put too much stock into the Week 1 con­test.

Calvert third-year head coach Kevin Streete did not en­joy walk­ing off the field hav­ing been blanked, but he was not dis­ap­pointed with the team’s ef­fort or its prepa­ra­tions. One night ear­lier, Street ad­mit­ted that he watched Matt Har­ris and Michael Woollen stay for an hour af­ter prac­tice to work on pass­ing and shoot­ing drills.

“Af­ter prac­tice they wanted to stay and keep work­ing,” Streete re­called. “So, I was not about to leave be­fore they did. I even took pic­tures. I was so im­pressed with the way they worked and the way they wanted to stay. This team has only one se­nior starter and two ju­niors. Most of the team is made up of sopho­mores, so the fu­ture bodes well for these guys.”

La Plata con­trolled the tempo through the early stages of the game and

got on the board when DeLozier drilled a low shot into the up­per left hand cor­ner of the net for a 1-0 lead. The War­riors pro­ceeded to keep Calvert goal­keeper Kevin Pitcher busy through the re­main­der of the half, but Pitcher was up to the task.

Pitcher made a num­ber of div­ing and leap­ing saves to deny shots that ap­peared des­tined for the back of the net. On one high shot he de­flected the ball with his left hand off the cross­bar. But in the wan­ing sec­onds of the half, Pitcher al­lowed an un­for­tu­nate goal when team­mate Myles in­ad­ver­tently headed a ball past him.

“We just made a few men­tal mis­takes,” Streete said. “Car­son got caught on his feet there. It was just an un­lucky play. Kevin played re­ally well. He had a few set­backs this sum­mer that kept him from com­ing into the sea­son at 100 per­cent. But he played well tonight. La Plata is a very good team.”

In the open­ing min­utes of the sec­ond half, La Plata forged a com­mand­ing 3-0 lead when DePreist-Kessler made a long cross that Caron headed past Pitcher. Nei­ther team scored over the last 37 min­utes of the game, how­ever, some­thing that re­minded But­ler how far his team still has to travel.

“In the first half, we did a great job con­trol­ling the ball and mak­ing good passes,” But­ler said. “But in the sec­ond half we stopped pass­ing across and sent too many passes for­ward. We got up in a track meet and that’s not the type of team that we want to be.”

Calvert (0-1) is sched­uled to host Thomas Stone at 5 p.m. to­day.

Calvert girls edge La Plata in 2 OTs

In the ac­com­pa­ny­ing meet­ing be­tween the girls soc­cer teams from both schools played in Prince Fred­er­ick, the Cava­liers forged a 3-2 dou­ble-over­time vic­tory over the War­riors on a goal by fresh­man Kayleigh Ve­nis, as­sisted by a cross from fresh­man Claire Wil­liams.

Calvert scored the game’s first goal in the 11th minute with a tally from sopho­more Anita Pope with as­sists go­ing to se­nior Syd­ney Wat­son and ju­nior Cam­ryn Wil­liams.

La Plata an­swered with goals in the 15th and 18th min­utes and led 2-1 at half­time.

Just about mid­way through the sec­ond half, Wat­son tied the game for the Cava­liers on a through-ball with se­nior Lau­ren Miller pick­ing up the as­sist.

STAFF PHOTO BY TED BLACK

La Plata’s Seth DePri­est-Kessler looks for open team­mates in the sec­ond half of Tues­day’s game against Calvert. DePri­est-Kessler had an as­sist in the sec­ond half as the War­riors cruised to a 3-0 vic­tory over the Cava­liers in the SMAC opener for both squads.

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