Boy’s Soccer Season Ends in Battle with Fleetwood
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Once the soccer season reaches the district tournament, each game determines whose season will end and whose will continue.
The boy’s soccer team hiked up to Hershey Stadium to face off against Fleetwood in the second round of the district tournament and fight for a spot in the state tournament on the night of October 27.
With rain pouring down and the game being held on a turf field, which makes the ball more difficult to control, both teams were on the lookout for unexpected shots.
Just over four minutes into the first half, Fleetwood standout Marckens Griffon (#27) bodied the ball into Susquehannock’s goal off of a clean cross from teammate Jeff Eager-Heffner (#20), which put Fleetwood a goal ahead and the Warriors in pursuit.
For the remaining 35 minutes of the first half, Fleetwood and Susky possessed the ball back and forth for a couple of minutes at a time in the other team’s defensive third before their opponent’s regained posture and pushed back.
The first half was rather slow; other than the early point by Fleetwood, each team shot only three times and any fouls were few and far in-between.
Even after the players left the field during halftime, spectators still watched some action when two adult fans from Susky and Fleetwood nearly threw hands after they had a verbal disagreement.
Fired up and ready to secure the win in order to continue their season, both teams returned to the field for the second half.
The first 21 minutes of the second half saw both teams locked in a fast-paced back and forth fight for possession.
Shots were taken more often, players received more fouls, and even a yellow card was given to Susquehannock junior Adam Rebich (#25).
It was clear that each team had turned up the pace and intensity for the second half; Fleetwood was trying to lock down the field and secure the win while Susquehannock was hunting for an opportunity to score and remain in the game.
The Warriors finally found that opportunity after 61 minutes of fighting when Senior Lucas Miller (#11) provided Senior Colton Mumley (#12) with an opportunity to score and bring the game to 1-1 with just over 18 minutes left in the final half.
With the score tied, each team was frantically trying to put another point on the board and ride out the final minutes.
Eight minutes after Susky scored their goal, Fleetwood’s Haydyn Zagorski (#3) maneuvered past the Warrior’s goalie to score from an assist by Lucas Strange (#50).
In the final 10 minutes of the game, Susquehannock fought hard to find the necessary point to tie the game once again, but, unfortunately for the warriors, that extra point never came, securing a win for Fleetwood with a final score of 2-1.
Senior Zak Kettinger is a defender on Susky’s starting lineup.
“I really feel like we could’ve outdone Fleetwood. We fought for so many opportunities to score, but by the end of the game, we had only put one in the back of the net. No single player was responsible for us losing, and I’m still proud of the effort that everyone made. Although the loss against Fleetwood was a tough way to go out, if you look at the big picture, we still had a great season.”
Even though the Warriors did not have the opportunity to participate in the state tournament, they still earned sweatshirts to commemorate their season as division champions.
Although every group that participates in Susky’s soccer program must face that final game of the year, the loss was particularly heartfelt for players in the senior class of 2017.
For most of the senior soccer athletes, this past season will be their last together before they part ways beyond high school.
Senior Lucas Miller has played with most of the varsity starting lineup for over a decade.
“It was a really powerful game,” said Miller.
“Of course I was really sad that we had to end our season on a loss, but I was also really proud of how far the team has gone. Especially because of how long the seniors have been together, it was nice to get a division champion title in our final season together.”