Hyde School: 0 – Hebron Academy: 7
Boys Varsity Soccer traveled to Hebron Academy on Monday to play a match that was rescheduled due to poor weather. The game was played on their natural grass pitch under mostly clear skies and cool temperatures.
The Phoenix lads started the match by playing some of their best soccer of the season. The Lumberjacks tested their resolve early and often with their strong offensive play. The Defensive unit consisting of Nolan Lowder`16 at Centerback, Brandon Nelson`16 at Stopper, Jesse Higgins`16 at Right Back and James Lee`16 at Left Back, did a nice job of containing their offensive drives and redistributing the ball to the Wingers. Aidan Bristow`16 and Kyler Hella`17 were out wide, right and left respectively. These two, along with Center Midfielders James Kellogg`16 and Ben Mooney`16 worked especially hard in the first half of play because they needed to maintain their marks on the opponent’s offensive players and quickly transition to offensive play when possession changed. Though the team played well, Hebron was able to control the possession game, rarely allowing the Hyde boys to move the ball to Forwards Evan Kagame`16 and Duncan O’Rourke`16. Hyde Keeper Greg Kidger`17 made some impressive saves in the early going of the game to keep the slate clean. However, in the 36th minute Hebron got one to go up 1-0 before the break at half time.
Though the Phoenix played well in the first half of play, they made some early mistakes defensively in the second half which the Lumberjacks exploited. This resulted in them scoring 5 more goals in the first 25 minutes of the half. They came often and they came fast. It was the type of scoring flurry that hits like a tidal wave, leaving broken spirits in its wake. In the 74th minute, Hebron scored on a Penalty Kick, the result of an aggressive tackle in the box by a Phoenix defender.
This was definitely not the result we wanted. The opponent clearly was better than we were on this day. They kept us pinned down during the first half and broke us defensively in the second. That notwithstanding, there were some bright lights among the darkness. In the first 45 minutes, the boys worked as a unit and played with determination and grit, and above all; they supported one another. Unfortunately, that halted after Hebron scored their second goal early in the second half. Instead, they allowed their lesser selves to emerge and their unity fractured. Individuals played as individuals; some deflated, some tried to do it all themselves, some blamed themselves and some placed the blame on others.
To get ready for our next match, the coaches will provide an opportunity for all members of the team to clear the air with each other so that they can let go of resentments and start to move forward again. In the time leading up to our next match, we will focus less on honing soccer specific skills, and instead work on developing ‘leadership’ and ‘concern’ for others. A step of maturity is needed by all. Our next game is on Friday October 23rd at home with our sister school, Hyde Woodstock.