South Webster met Minford on Tuesday night for an SOC soccer showdown.
The two schools clashed throughout the contest, but if you ask the coaches, they’ll tell you neither team played a complete game.
“We played an awesome first half,” Minford head coach Dave Gampp said. “We possessed the ball, we wanted it more, and it’s like a tale of two halves. They wanted it more in the second half than we did.”
South Webster head coach Corey Claxon agreed with Gampp’s observations.
“I really thought Minford played a good first half, and I told our guys that they were the better team out there in the first half,” Claxon said.
Scoring in this game did not come easy. Minford sophomore Brayden Davis missed a shot wide right at the 25 minute mark. South Webster had several scoring chances stopped by Minford senior goalkeeper Logan Boston.
Boston finished the game with nine saves, while Jeeps freshman keeper Tanner Voiers had seven stops on the day.
South Webster had a shot at striking first when junior Shiloah Blevins knocked the ball to the left corner, but Boston made a diving catch to keep it from finding the net.
The Falcons were able to get on the board 22:35 into the game when sophomore Adam Cordle found Davis for the score. Cordle hit Davis on a nice cross, and Davis headed the ball into the net to put Minford ahead 1-0.
Gampp gave Cordle a lot of credit after the game for his play throughout the season, especially in this match.
“He is the backbone of our team,” Gampp said. “He controls so many balls, and is so strong with possession. He gets it out wide, and beats players and makes really good soccer decisions on the field.”
Minford was able to mimic Cordle’s play through much of the first half, controlling possession and looking to be in charge on the field.
The Jeeps missed a chance to tie things up before halftime with 11 minutes left to play when Boston came out of the goal to try and tame a South Webster scoring chance. The shot from the Jeeps missed high over the net, and the Falcons were flying high with a 1-0 lead heading into halftime.
“The first half, we played one of the best halves we’ve played all year,” Gampp said. “A team like that … it’s going to be a low scoring game.”
While the defense was the theme of the first half for Minford, it was the South Webster offense that stole the show in the second.
First, the Jeeps tied things up with 29:50 to play in the match when sophomore Devyn Coriell scored on a nice throw in from Blevins.
Then, Coriell struck again for his second score when sophomore Braden Martin found Coriell again on a corner kick to give South Webster a 2-1 lead with 25:35 remaining.
The goals put South Webster ahead, but Gampp thought his keeper played a great match in the end.
“He made a lot of good saves today,” Gampp said about Boston. “The two goals that came in on him, there was nothing he could do about it. He made the saves he had to make and kept us in the game.”
The scores from Coriell were a part of the focus at halftime from Claxon, who wanted his midfielders to get more involved in the action.
“We mostly said our midfield has got to step up, and they did,” Claxon said. “They tightened up a little bit, stopping the ball from getting played up to their forwards.”
Coriell was able to play a large role in that performance with his two goals and defensive efforts.
“We kind of try and key in sometimes on different players, and Coriell really stepped up,” Claxon said. “We knew we had to get him the ball, and he did it for us. “We’ve been waiting on him to do that, he’s a great player.”
Gampp knew that the scores from South Webster were going to be costly.
“We just gave up too many easy opportunities on free kicks and corners from the side,” Gampp said. “They’re really good about finishing down low in the box, especially on set plays.”
The Falcons were down on the scoreboard, but weren’t going to go down lightly. Minford junior Talen Coriell had a chance to even the score with three minutes to play on an indirect kick, but his shot bounced off the right pole of the goal.
When the clock hit zero, South Webster was on top 2-1 to improve their record to 7-0-4 on the season.
“Haven’t lost a game yet,” Claxon said. “You can’t complain with that, so I’m happy with where we’re at. We’ve had to struggle a bit at times, but I think sometimes that’s a good thing. It makes you a better team because you have to work harder.”
The Jeeps will look to remain undefeated on Thursday when they host Clay.
Minford and Gampp are looking to keep improving as the regular season nears an end.
“I want to finish out strong with two good wins,” Gampp said. “We need two good wins, really.”
The Falcons will play Valley at home on Thursday, and will also play the Waverly Tigers at home on Tuesday, Oct. 3.
18:25 – Brayden Davis goal assisted by Adam Cordle (1-0 Minford)
29:50 – Devyn Coriell goal assisted by Shiloah Blevins (1-1 tie)
25:35 – Devyn Coriell goal assisted by Braden Martin (2-1 South Webster)
Reach Benjamin Spicer at (502)264-7318 or on Twitter @BSpicerPDT