A late game defensive surge helped to deliver the first win of the season for the Dallas Center-Grimes boys soccer team Monday night.
In front of the hometown crowd, the Mustangs delivered a goal in both halves of play to defeat visiting Nevada 2-1. The first goal came in the 32nd minute of play when Rancy Freeman punched in his first and the teams’ first goal of the 2019 campaign. What happened with that goal was more than just a simple 1-0 lead, but what Mustang head coach Collin Lane is looking for going forward.
“That’s essentially how we like to see a goal built,” began Lane. “It’s not just a direct ball into space but instead we work it up and find someone on the far side and then make that run that everyone loves to see. Those are the ones that are easy to see and easy to finish up.”
Just over seven minutes later, returning All-Conference goalkeeper Brennon Woody highlighted DC-G’s defensive efforts with a superman like diving stop to halt a would-be goal in the top right-hand corner of the net. It was a play that would make any highlight reel but what put this top ten performance apart was the impact that it had later on in the contest, as coach Lane went on to mention.
“When you look back in the game to what was somewhat of a turning point it’s easy to look at Brennon’s amazing stop,” started Lane. “If they made that goal then, the goal they scored in the second half would have tied up the game and the whole dynamic would have shifted. That was basically a game winning stop by Brennon.”
It was certainly a play to behold and Woody spoke about the stop following the win.
“It was crazy, they were attacking and our defense was kind of pushed over. They played the ball straight across where I couldn’t get it but then I was lucky enough to be in the right place and I just made a play.”
DC-G took over the first half with more than just a lead, but a dominant first half in terms of time of possession. DC-G nearly doubled Nevada in first-half ball possession but unfortunately, that didn’t translate very well to the second half. Although the Mustangs came out on top, it was a lot tenser than coach Lane would have liked it to be. Especially within the final 15 minutes of the contest, the ball possession battle flipped dramatically as DC-G held possession for just over five of the final 15 minutes.
What seemed like a comfortable 2-0 lead was then cut in half after Nevada poked in their lone goal of the night with under 13 minutes left in the contest. That created a tense atmosphere for the final 13 minutes of the contest, something coach Lane spoke about after the contest.
“We got ahead of ourselves and started playing too direct,” began Lane. “We needed to slow the ball down in that second half. When they scored their goal to make it 2-1, I feel we tried to go too fast and that’s the point in time where we want to slow things down in order to be the most effective.”
What would end up being the saving grace for the Mustangs in the second half was the goal scored by Noah Webster with just over 38 minutes left in regulation.
The Mustangs ended up holding on for the win, giving them their eighth straight season opening victory. The next event on the docket for the Mustangs comes right away as they travel to HA Lynn Stadium in Newton today to battle in conference foe Newton. The JV contest will get things started at 5:30 p.m. followed by the varsity contest at 7 p.m.