Sabres fall shy
Eagles top SSPP in double OT
Annapolis Area Christian 3 Sts. Peter & Paul 2
EASTON — There was plenty of pushing, pulling and grabbing.
Both coaches raised their arms, protesting calls not made.
And though Saints Peter and Paul High boys’ head soccer coach G.R. Cannon would have liked to have had a few more calls go his way, he settled on the reason why his Sabres had suffered perhaps one of their toughest losses of the season late Tuesday afternoon, as quickly as if he were chasing a 50-50 ball himself.
“We didn’t clear our lines,” Cannon said moments after watching Annapolis Area Christian’s Luke Eberle go deep into the right corner and steer a hard cross toward the front of the net that went off a Sts. Peter & Paul defender and into the net for own goal 1 minute, 20 seconds into the second overtime to give the Eagles a 3-2 victory and their first win of the season.
“We’ve been talking about that all year. When you don’t clear the ball things in the box are going to be happening,” Cannon said after the Sabres slipped to 5-5-1 overall and in the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association’s B Conference. “That’s why both teams put so many services in because it makes panic mode. It comes down to, can you clear your lines or not? And if you don’t, you’re going to be made to pay for it at this level.”
The Sabres paid for it 10 minutes into the second half, when Annapolis Area’s Matthew McNair struck a corner kick toward the near post. Eagles teammate Tolu Balogen sprinted in, jumped, and
back-kicked the ball before it went over the end line. The ball rolled to Annapolis Area’s Anthony Coppola, who — on his birthday — found space between Sts. Peter & Paul keeper Cory Morgan and back Cole Sovero and tapped in the go-ahead goal for a 2-1 Eagles lead.
“You make it dangerous,” Annapolis Area head coach Vaughn Ridings said.
Danny Reyes almost supplied the equalizer less than four minutes later when his shot banged off the crossbar. Just 1:27 later, Sts. Peter & Paul’s Henry Shindler collected a pass from Shawn Reinoehl and tucked a shot past Eagles keeper Griffin Doherty (four saves) for a 2-2 tie.
“Always proud when the kids respond,” Cannon said. “But that’s one thing about this team that I’ve never had to worry about. They have, and a credit to them, they’ve worked extremely hard from day one to now, and they’ll continue to do so. But the way we played ...”
The Eagles, who returned three starters from injury yesterday — Eberle, Jaden Rollins and Tyler Beck — threatened to regain the lead with 15:24 remaining in regulation when Balogen got free but sent a drive over the goal.
Seven minutes later, Balogen came in on right wing and blasted a shot that Morgan (seven saves) made a kick save on with his right leg. A fallen Morgan couldn’t control the rebound though. Balogen moved toward the ball as Morgan scrambled to his feet. Balogen’s foot touched the ball as Morgan extended his left leg and slide in front of the shot, almost sitting on the ball as Balogen tumbled over the top of him to keep the 2-2 tie intact.
Morgan was injured on the play, finished regulation, then was replaced by Joey Greaney in overtime.
“The last several games, we had so many freshmen and sophomores starting,” Ridings said, his team now 1-11. “Early in the season, where we’re taking leads, and just can’t hold it because of a couple of years of experience that they’re up against. And they’re good players. They’re a great foundation for our future. But this is where they’re learning. And they’re getting a steep learning curve right away.”
Both teams worked the ball close to the opposition’s goal in the first 10-minute overtime, but couldn’t produce a game-winner before Eberle directed the gamewinning ball on goal early in the second OT.
“Luke is a top player,” Cannon said. “They’re well coached and he’s a top player and that’s what big-time players do; they change games.”
Sts. Peter & Paul took a 1-0 lead with under 18 minutes remaining in the first half, when Shindler got free on a breakaway and popped one past Doherty. The Eagles increased the pressure on the Sabres, with Justin Alford directing a header off the left post before chipping a floater over Morgan for a 1-1 tie with 9 minutes left in the first half.
Annapolis Area almost took a 2-1 lead just before half when Morgan got drawn off his line and the ball was shot toward the far left corner. But Sts. Peter & Paul’s Aidan Ryan cleared the ball off the goal line to preserve the 1-1 tie.
“I can’t fault the effort,” Cannon said. “But we weren’t good enough. I’ve talked all year about consistency. We weren’t good today. We’ve got to respond. But that’s been kind of how it’s been. We play one really solid game, have a game where we’re maybe up against it a little bit, and sometimes you’re going to pay the price against good players.
“Sometimes you win some of those you shouldn’t,” Cannon added. “Sometimes you play poorly and you win those and you shouldn’t. And sometimes you play well and you lose. We didn’t play well today.”
Kent Island 7, Kent County 0
STEVENSVILLE — Alex Weese (assist) and McLain Mogel scored two goals each, and the North Bayside-leading Buccaneers improved to 8-1, 6-0.
Carson Colombo (assist), Judah Brobst and Nate Driver added single goals, and Jonathan Alvarez (two) and Mike Bubnov (one) added assists.
The Trojans fell to 2-8-, 1-6.
GIRLS’ SOCCER K. Island 2, North Caroline 0
RIDGELY — Ashlee Rotert set up second-half goals by Jordan Grard and McKenzie Mogel as the Buccaneers improved to 6-2 overall, 4-0 North Bayside.
Mogel’s goal was her 50th of her career, setting a new school scoring record.
Madi Banks made 19 saves for Kent Island, which won its sixth straight, the last five by shutout.
Q. Anne’s 4, Easton 3
EASTON — Kiwi Weddell had a pair of goals and Jess Wright and Riley Napier (assist) had one each to lift the Lions (8-2, 5-1) in overtime.
Cat Christian accounted for all three goals for the Warriors (6-3, 3-2). Olivia Ball and Lily Osborne each had one assist and keeper Jess Millard had 10 saves.
Saints Peter and Paul goalie Cory Morgan, bottom, makes a save as Annapolis Area’s Tolu Balogun tumbles over him late in the second half Tuesday as Sabre defenders Cole Sovero (5) and Aidan Ryan (2) watch.
Annapolis Area Christian’s Graham Hendrick, left, and Saints Peter and Paul’s Callan Godlee (11) collide after a header during Tuesday’s first half.
Saints Peter and Paul’s Callan Godlee (11) strikes a header as teammate Henry Shindler (18) watches during Tuesday’s first half.