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BOYS SOCCER: Cleveland 2, Madison 1 (10/8/2012)
October 15, 2012By Steve McCrea of Cleveland High School
Cleveland 2, Madison 1
The Cleveland Warriors went on the road to Madison for their first PIL league game of the year. This was their first game on grass, and it took a bit to make the adjustment, but the Warriors clearly dominated the game far more than the final score suggests.
Cleveland outshot the Senators 25-12 for the game, and many of the Senators' shots were weak or from far out. Cleveland had first half shots from Connor Rodriguez-Scott (3), Daniel Merchant (2), Kevin Elliott McCrea (2) and Francesco Verna-Ketel (1). But the two that mattered were from senior midfielder, Nick Van Marter. Van Marter scored first in the 23rd minute, after junior Daniel Merchant did an amazing job fighting for a ball along the goal line. Merchant crossed the ball over the box to senior Cameron Craig, who dropped it back to Van Marter for a shot along the ground from 25 yards back that beat Madison's keeper to his right. Van Marter struck again in the 37th minute from almost the same spot, again with an assist from Merchant, this time hitting a left-footed shot into the upper left corner of the goal.
Cleveland was even more dominant in the second half, with breakaway shots from Cameron Craig and Nick Van Marter, and a strong play by junior Francesco Verna-Ketel that got the ball to Daniel Merhant for a shot from the top of the box that went over the bar. In the 53th minute, junior forward Connor Rodriguez-Scott was pulled down from behind by a Madison defender inside the box, but no foul was called. Verna-Ketel also had a point-blank shot in the 74th minute that forced another good save by Madison's harried keeper.
Madison's only goal came in the 65th minute on a 2-on-1 break. Madison's left forward chipped it into the net from about 15 yards out for the score.
The defense was otherwise solid throughout the game, and Charman played a solid game at keeper. The offense generated plenty of scoring chances, and the score could easily have been much higher. It felt good to get a win on the board after three consecutive ties, and the win should give the Warriors confidence as they take on their next PIL 5A competition, Roosevelt, on Wednesday at 4:15 at Delta Park.
Due to difficult filming conditions, there will be no highlights posted for the Madison game. Copies of the game tape are available from Steve Mccrea (email@example.com) on request.