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BOYS SOCCER: Cleveland loses tough match to Corvalls, 2-1 (9/24/13)
September 29, 2013By Steve McCrea of Cleveland High School
The Cleveland Warriors traveled south on Tuesday night to take on the Corvallis Spartans. The Warriors outplayed the Spartans at both ends of the pitch, but some bad luck and exceptional goaltending by Corvallis led to Cleveland's first loss of the season by a score of 2-1.
Corvallis scored first just 55 seconds into the match, when midfielder Albert Kai took a bouncing ball from over 30 yards out and fired a shot off the bottom of the crossbar, which caromed downward into the net. Besides one more outside shot that was easily handled by senior keeper Hubie Charman, Cleveland's solid defense assured that Kai's would be the last shot on goal for Corvallis in the first half.
The Warriors took control of the game, showing quick passing and obtaining a number of excellent early scoring chances, including header shots by senior Braxton Griffith and by sophomore Jorge Flores. In the 5th minute, senior Mo Abdikadir, who wreaked havoc down the right side for most of the half, stole a ball and got in behind the defense for a shot that beat Corvallis senior keeper Hayden Rock, but hit off the crossbar. At the 17 minute mark, it was Mudy Abdikadir who took a near-side corner kick from Daniel Merchant and fired it on goal, but it was deflected by a Corvallis defender just wide. Mudy got another shot off at very close range just a minute later, but Rock made a great stop to keep Cleveland off the board.
Flores had a good shot in the 26th minute, and helped create another chance in the 31st, when a nice pass from senior Kevin Elliott-McCrea led to a left-footed cross by Flores that Rock was able to jump on right in front of a waiting Mudy Abdikadir. The Warriors finally tied it up a minute later, when Mudy passed to senior Adrien Baures on the right side, and Baures hit a shot along the ground back inside the left post for his 6th goal of the season.
The Warriors continued to control play in the second half, with multiple high-quality scoring chances, but the ball simply would not find its way into the net. Mudy Abdikadir got a shot from inside the 6-yard box in the 42nd minute that was past the goalie, but a defender got his leg up high to deflect a sure goal. Adrien Baures ripped a hard shot in the 43rd minute that forced Rock to make a diving save. Mudy got another close-in shot in the 45th minute, and Flores just missed on the rebound. But in the 48th minute, a low cross from Corvallis hit off a Warrior defender and went in for a fluke goal to put Corvallis up 2-1.
Mudy had a shot less than 10 yards out in the 54th minute, and Mo Abdikadir had a rebound shot from even closer in, but could not find the net. Two minutes later, senior Connor Rodriguez-Scott got a shot off in the box, and Mudy again had a rebound chance turned away by Corvallis's keeper Rock. The Warriors continued to control the ball well and Corvallis was clearly on their heels, culminating with a play in the 77th minute, where Mudy fought a ball forward to Rodriguez-Scott inside the penalty spot, but he hit the bouncing ball over the bar for the last shot of the game.
While coach Scott Killen was disappointed with the final outcome, he let his boys know that they outplayed Corvallis and should be pleased with their dominating performance despite the absence of three starters from the lineup.
The Warriors meet with the 6A Century Jaguars Thursday night at Cleveland Stadium, game time 7 PM. Century is 4-1 and ranked number 12 in Division 6A, but Cleveland will have their full compliment of starting players back on the field for the first time since Wilsonville and are primed for the match. It should be an exciting game!