Archive for Thursday, September 14, 2006

LHS rallies past Maranatha

Buehler, McNeill score late in come-from-behind victory

September 14, 2006

— The quiet game may be an effective strategy for parents and babysitters to get young kids to be silent, but it's bad soccer strategy.

Still, for a majority of the Lansing High boys soccer team's 2-1 victory Tuesday against Maranatha Academy, it appeared that was the Lions' game plan.

Senior goalkeeper Alex Burton consistently barked out orders, but the only other audible voices at Stump Park were those of the Maranatha players.

"The communication was definitely off," senior midfielder Kyle Buehler said. "We were running into each other, making poor passes and everything. But we finally put a few together in the second half."

It was a good thing Lansing figured things out in the final 20 minutes, because the silent treatment clearly wasn't working. It led to few good passes and even fewer scoring opportunities.

Maranatha (3-3) dominated all aspects of the game during the first half. It made a steady stream of strong runs at the goal, and it finally capitalized in the 27th minute. Lansing failed to clear a corner kick. Maranatha's Brady Davidson corralled the ball and blasted a shot that deflected off Lansing's Tylor McNeill and just inside the near post for a goal.

The deficit didn't seem to wake up the Lions as their sluggish play continued for the rest of the half. They had a handful of scoring chances but failed to convert. Senior forward Andy Dick hit the post with a shot and also had a penalty kick blocked.

Although the Lions discussed their communication troubles at halftime, they didn't do much to fix the problem in the first 20 minutes of the second half.

Lansing finally broke out of its slumber in the 62nd minute when Buehler smashed a corner kick that hugged the endline perfectly and took a nose-dive just under the crossbar for a goal.

That was the wake-up call the Lions needed.

"Once we got that one, it just boosted everyone and we started realizing we could win this game," McNeill said.

Lansing (3-1-1) turned up the intensity and began putting more pressure on the Maranatha goal. The Lions struck again in the 67th minute when Clayton Hall crossed a pass to McNeill who one-touched it past the keeper for a 2-1 lead over the 2004 Class 4A state champions.

"I think this game gave us a lot of confidence," McNeill said. "This was a team that I think was better than us in a lot of aspects of the game, but we just pulled a couple of things together at the end. It was an ugly win, but we capitalized on the little things."

Lansing next plays at 4:30 p.m. today against Immaculata at Lansing Middle School.

LHS FALLS TO BASEHOR

Senior Stepan Herout scored two goals, but the Lansing High soccer team dropped a 3-2 decision to Basehor-Linwood on Sept. 6 at LMS.

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