Tigers throttle Knights on the pitch
ORANGE CITY - Spencer's boys used an 85-second, three-goal burst early in the first half against Unity Christian Monday night to blow past the Knights 6-1.
The previous time the Tigers played UC it was a 5-0 beatdown. Tiger boys soccer coach Ben MacRae took that into account for the game's strategy.
"I think the focus going into the game was to come out injury-free. With a week to go (in the regular season), we also need to make sure we keep our rhythm of play going," MacRae said. "We wanted to keep a high tempo in the game and come away with the result. We weren't focused on how many goals we scored, but just the way we played and the performance."
Goal scoring wasn't an issue for Spencer as Dylan Ellis punched in a Cole Loehr pass in the game's sixth minute. A minute later Satchel Cederwall put in another off a Cameron Geyer assist, and a third goal came just 25 seconds later off the foot of Hunter Cushman unassisted.
The Tigers waited until the 21st minute to pounce again. This time Geyer fed Chris Anderson for the 4-0 advantage.
With five minutes left before the break, Cushman took a deep goal kick from Trey Hookfin and buried it into the net.
Unity answered with their lone goal of the game a minute later.
The only scoring connection in the second half went from Tyler Loehr to Cole Loehr, solidifying the 6-1 victory.
"I felt our performance was very good. When you start off three-nil in the space of eight minutes, you obviously are playing well," MacRae said. "I thought we passed well. Played to feet. AJ Johnson and Chris Anderson were outstanding out there. They've been outstanding all year, and they don't get the credit they deserve."
Despite the large advantage in the second half, MacRae wanted to stick with his top players to maintain the flow heading into the postseason.
"It's very important for everybody to understand who's playing where and where our strengths are. It's important they get a good understanding together. If you make too many subs, you get out of rhythm," MacRae said. "I think we've done that a bit too much this season, and coming into the final week of play, I wanted to get into a rhythm of play. In the second half you have to give UC a bit of credit. They closed the ball down well which made us go backwards. Although we possessed the ball for long periods, we didn't give them as much trouble as the first half."
Spencer's record now climbs to 16-1 on the year. They'll have one more contest this regular season Thursday night at home in the second game of a girl/boy varsity doubleheader against West Sioux.