(Above) Clear Lake’s Dylan Schuchard moves the ball down the field, as GHV’s Ryan Meyers tries to catch him. -Reporter photos by Chris Barragy
The Clear Lake boys soccer team is playing some of its best soccer as the regular season comes to a close, giving Coach Matt Anderson reason to be optimistic about the post-season.
CL 2, GHV 1
On Tuesday, May 8, the Lions traveled to Garner for a rematch against the Cardinals. A fairly strong wind kept most of the action towards the west end of the field for both halves.
The Cardinals managed to record nine corner kicks against the Lions, with most of them coming in the first half. The match was pretty even, with both teams making attacks on goal.
In the 35th minute of the first half, the Lions’ Dylan Schuchard completed the throw in assist to Aaron Canchola, who made an aggressive play on the ball to record the first goal of the contest. The half time score was 1-0 Lions.
“In the second half we went to work on controlling the ball and pace of the game,” said Coach Anderson.
In the 58th minute Sam Pedelty made a hard shot on goal which deflected off a Cardinal player and into the opposite corner of the goal.
In the 76th minute GHV’s Jonah Albertson converted a goal to tighten the contest back up to a one score match.
The last four minutes were fast and furious with Garner’s renewed momentum. The Lions managed to conclude the contest with a 2-1 victory.
Goal keeper Joel Groeneweg recorded five saves on the evening with the defensive back line of Schuchard, Ben Stroup, Sam Badger and Landon Lovstad totaling an additional six saves.
“The thing that I’m seeing out of our team is that we are keeping every match close,” said GHV Coach Eric Williams. “We are not giving up and really trying to finish strong. We were down 2-0 with five-minutes left and put a goal in and came close toward the end, too. It’s so much fun to have strong competition close to home that we can play to make each other better.”
GHV goal keeper Landon Dalbeck had nine saves in the game.
Webster City 2, CL 1
On Thursday, the Lions played their last home match of the season against the
Webster City Lynx.
“This was a fun match to coach and watch. We have a long standing rivalry with Lynx dating back to 2012 when Webster City was incredibly good and we were attempting to re-establish our program. Since that time our matches with Webster City have been full of excitement and momentum changes,” said Coach Anderson.
Clear Lake began the match wanting to be nice to their opponents and spotted them a free goal in the fourth minute of the contest.
Down a goal for most of the first half, the Lions responded with determination and a lot of hard work. In the 32nd minute of the first half, Sam Pedelty once again carved up the defense with his foot work and striking ability. After a run up the left side of the field, a hard right turn at the goal line, a few more maneuvers around some would be Lynx defenders, Pedelty evened up the contest with the Lions’ first goal of the night.
The half time concluded with a 1-1 score.
“We continued our efforts and controlled attacks into the second half,” said Anderson. “With five corners, five additional shots on goal, and eight shots which ended up just wide or high, we had numerous opportunities to win this contest in regulation.”
Regulation concluded with the score still knotted up 1-1.
The teams exchanged blows in the first 10-minutes of overtime, with both having transition goal attempts turned away by the goal keepers. In the 97th minute of the match, with just three-minutes remaining in the final overtime, the Lynx converted a sudden death goal for the victory.
“We played really solid soccer for much of the match. We improved and executed several of the items we have been working on at practice with tremendous success,” said Coach Anderson.