Pan­thers look strong in 2014 soc­cer opener

The Covington News - - SPORTS - STAFF RE­PORTS news@cov­news.com

On a beau­ti­ful sunny day for soc­cer at the RYSA com­plex in Cony­ers, coach Ken Van Ness and his 2014 Peachtree Academy Pan­thers took down con­fer­ence foe Fur­tah Prep 7-0, in a home game that saw the Pan­thers ex­cel in ev­ery phase of the game.

The game started out slowly for the Pan­thers as they held a 2-0 lead go­ing into half­time, as the visi­tors played hard and kept them out of the net de­spite nu­mer­ously op­por­tu­ni­ties. The first half was high­lighted by the first of four goals by sopho­more Law­son Van Ness who had a mon­ster game for the Pan­thers.

The sec­ond half was a dif­fer­ent story. With Coach Ken Van Ness de­mand­ing that each player fin­ish plays and at­tack, the Pan­thers pro­ceeded to place five more goals in the net, led by Law­son Van Ness with 3 for the sec­ond half. The Pan­thers con­tin­ued to at­tack and wore down the Fur­tah de­fense.

Ju­nior Kelly Yeomans was strong de­fen­sively for the day and con­trib­uted a goal in the win. Sopho­more Bran­don Wil­son was strong in goal and was a mas­ter com­mu­ni­ca­tor in lead­ing the de­fense for the shutout. 8th graders Grayson Hop­kins and Nikki Blake played a key role in the strong de­fen­sive ef­fort of the day, with Hop­kins also con­tribut­ing a goal and as­sist in the win.

Law­son Van Ness was quoted af­ter the game say­ing, “I am very pleased with our over­all ef­fort and per­for­mance. They played very well. I was very proud of Law­son for the game. His four goals and ef­fort to­day re­ally set the tone for the en­tire game.”

The 1-0 Pan­thers will travel to Woodstock on Fri­day to take on Fur­tah again, to com­plete the home and away sched­ule with them for the sea­son. Next week, the Pan­thers host Trin­ity Chris­tian out of Ope­lika, Alabama at RYSA with the game start­ing at 4 p.m.

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