Hits and misses
Tonganoxie The Lansing High boys soccer team got the result it wanted when it played Tonganoxie on Tuesday - a victory.
Just how the Lions got that victory, however, left plenty to be desired.
Lansing dominated possession for the entire game and it held Tonganoxie without a shot in the first half, but the Lions expected to turn their 42 shots into a larger margin of victory than the 3-0 final score.
"We had millions of chances," said senior forward Andy Dick. "Myself included, we were rocking them really hard, but we just hit them right at the keeper or we were sailing them right over the goal from 15 yards out. They were shots we should've been burying, but at least we came out with the win."
Lansing dominated the game from start to finish. The Lions kept the ball on the Chieftains' end of the field almost the entire first half and held a 16-0 shot advantage in the first 40 minutes. Of those shots, just six were on target. Most sailed wide of the posts or over the crossbar.
"We've just got to bare down, actually aim and not get too excited," Dick said of the missed shots.
Fortunately for Lansing, Dick was dead-on twice in the first half with a pair of goals. The first game in the 15th minute when senior midfielder Kyle Buehler dribbled into the box and fed a perfect ball that caught Dick in stride. Dick then one-touched it past the keeper to the far post for a 1-0 lead.
Dick added a second goal in the 30th minute that was almost identical to the first. The only difference was that the passer was senior Stepan Herout. Herout's assist was his team-leading third of the year.
The Lions' shooting accuracy was much better in the second half. The problem, however, was that their target appeared to be the Chieftains' goalkeeper instead of the back of the net. They placed 12 more shots on goal in the second half, but only one - a cross pass from Buehler that skipped through the keeper's arms and into the net - was good for a goal.
"We had so many shots, and nothing going in," LHS coach Randy Brown said. "It seemed as if every shot we took was going straight to the keeper. We're not focusing on where the shot has to go. We're just pounding the ball."
Brown was quick to point out that he wasn't fully disappointed with the amount of shots, though.
"The good news is we're taking shots. That's good," he said. "Now we need to turn that around and turn those shots into goals."
Brown said he wants his team to string together consistent performances night after night. That will be necessary if Lansing hopes to defend its Kaw Valley League Crown. LHS (2-0-1) is off to a good start on that mission. It beat Bonner Springs 2-0 in the season-opener and then used two goals from senior Nate Markovetz on Thursday to earn a 2-2 tie with Mill Valley.
"(Consistent play) is key," Brown said. "We have to keep working on that through the season, and we've got to focus and put the ball in the back of the net."
JV SHUTS OUT TONGIE
The LHS junior varsity used goals from Chance Thackston and Dennis Wood to beat Tonganoxie, 2-0. The Lions improved to 2-1 with the win.