The Trucker varsity soccer team started the season on a positive note with a 3-1 victory over the St. Mary Central Zephyrs on Tuesday, Aug. 19.
The non-conference matchup featured a very experienced Trucker squad taking on a younger Zephyr squad.
“Unlike last year’s squad, the 2014 Truckers are predominantly juniors and seniors with two or three years of varsity experience,” said Coach Roger Lupien. “With that experience level, Clintonville installed a new, more attack-oriented offense and the results were obvious from the beginning tap.”
The Trucker offense dominated play in the first half, generating 11 shots on goal. Excellent outside play by midfielders Aaron Morse and Blake Hauser kept the ball in the St. Mary’s end of the pitch and set up forwards Paul Kenfield and Garrett Kuss with scoring opportunities. Unfortunately, the Zephyr goalie was up to the challenge, keeping the score 0-0 at the half.
Clintonville came out in the second half and continued to play team-oriented soccer. Again and again, the ball was played to scoring areas.
At the 23:16 mark of the second period, Kenfield was fouled in the penalty area, resulting in a penalty kick. Kenfield beat the goalie with a low blast to the corner, putting Clintonville ahead 1-0. Four minutes later, Morse found Kenfield open in front of the net, and Kenfield notched his second goal of the contest. And at 31:07, Juan Hernandez scored his first goal of the season, pushing the score to 3-0.
St. Mary Central was able to defeat a very staunch Trucker defense with a breakaway goal at the 37:45 mark of the period making the final score 3-1.
“While winning our first game is important, I was more pleased with our approach and team-first attitude,” said Lupien. “The ball moved quickly around the defense with everyone getting touches. Our preseason work was clearly evident today. And defensively, the play of stopper Josh Schraeder and sweeper Jarren Vanman never let the opponent get started. Bob McCoy made some nice saves when needed. We got a chance to play some our young guys in the second half, and that was a goal for this first game. Overall, we were pleased with the effort and will work on some areas that need attention.”