Three Wins In A Row: Tiger Soccer Beats Manual
St. X continued their recent dominance Thursday evening as they defeated Manual 2-0. Confidence has been the key, as the Tigers seem to have found their niche with three consecutive wins.
St. X controlled the tempo early on. The Tigers quickly worked the ball and pushed forward. Through the first 20 minutes, the Tigers utilized the fast pace to make three great scoring opportunities off of senior right back and captain Neal McKiernan’s huge throw-ins. This match, however, was truly run by the St. X juniors. In the 31st minute, midfielder Trent Stigler drew a free kick just outside Manual’s goalie box. Stigler hooked the shot up and around the defender’s wall, placing it in the far left corner of the net for the opening goal of the game.
The Tigers led 1-0 at halftime.
Three minutes into the second half, a Manual player was given a red card, giving the Tigers a 11-10 player advantage for the rest of the match. This proved to be helpful, as St. X continued to push the ball forward with ease. Andrew Schaefer and Klayton Grimes continually created offensive opportunities for the Tigers, and they fought for every ball, not allowing Manual to clear it easily.
In the 70th minute, the Tigers ran the ball up the field. Manual struggled to clear the ball as it bounced around in a frenetic pace. The ball eventually found the St. X wing, and the ball was immediately fed to Colin Kremer. The junior midfielder one touched the pass into the back of the net to give St. X its third straight 2-0 lead.
The Tigers’ unrelenting offensive attack kept the Crimsons’ defense on their toes. Moments after Kremer’s goal, a chipped pass was played over the head of the defender to Klayton Grimes, creating a fast break. Grimes broke free from his defender and found the ball, but hit the shot just wide of the net.
The Tigers were not able to finish any more shots. After 80 full minutes of play, St. X claimed their third victory in a row with the final score of 2-0. The final score could have been even more lopsided, but senior defenseman Nick Schrage was extremely pleased with the effort nonetheless.
“We played really strong up top, finishing hard plays,” Schrage explained. “We really put it to their keeper. Moral down on the field was really boosted throughout the game as the offense continued to work perfectly. We had two juniors put in goals today, which really helped the team out. Overall, it was a solid job.”
After not getting a single goal in four games and 15 days, St. X has now found the back of the net six times in the last three games. With the offense finally comes the results the team is expecting.
Junior goalkeeper Davis George could not be happier that the St. X offense has hit its stride.
“What a game,” George said with a grin. “I’m so glad the offense is finally there. It’s a goalkeeper’s dream, absolutely.”
The Tigers look to continue their winning streak into their next game on Saturday against a tough team from Indiana. Brebeuf Jesuit Prep will make the trip down from Indianapolis to Brother Thomas More Stadium to take on St. X in a contest set for 3:30 PM.