STRATTANVILLE, Pa. (EYT/D9) – The Clarion-Limestone boys soccer team built a 3-1 halftime lead before having to hold on for a 4-3 victory over Redbank Valley on Tuesday evening at the C-L High School football field.
“The last time we played them, we gave up some quick goals, and I think the guys kind of hung their heads and quit,” said Redbank Valley head coach Ty Scott. “We’ve been telling them all season that we’re a second-half team. Tonight, they came out and kept fighting and playing hard in that second half and that’s all I’m asking of them.”
Owen Harmon got Redbank Valley (7-6 overall) on the board at the 35:13 mark of the first half for a 1-0 lead.
Twenty minutes later, Layton Dunn shot a ball past Bulldogs’ keeper Cole Monrean to tie the game 1-1 at the 15:53 mark. Cody Whitling got credit for an assist on the goal.
Whitling then scored his first of two goals at the 12:57 mark off a corner kick feed from Thomas Uckert, giving the Lions a 2-1 lead.
Whitling added his second goal at the 9:52 mark of the half giving C-L (6-2 overall) a 3-1 halftime lead.
“We had been firing on all cylinders lately, but tonight our passes weren’t connecting early on and Redbank ended up getting an early goal on us,” said C-L head coach Don Montgomery. “I think when our guys don’t score early, they kind of start to press a bit. Once we get that first one, they kind of settle down and relax and play their game more.”
Owen Clouse cut the C-L lead to one at the 31:57 mark of the second half, making the score 3-2.
Redbank missed a golden chance to tie the game when a Lions’ player was issued a red card for pushing down a Redbank player who was racing toward the net. Clouse rang the free kick off the post, keeping the Bulldogs down by one.
“We had the player we wanted to take that shot,” said Scott. “A little left or right and it would have been in, but that’s how it goes sometimes.”
Wyatt Boyden then restored the Lions’ two-goal lead again at the 13:47 mark. It would turn out to be the difference maker as Redbank made a furious attempt in the closing minutes.
Tyson Adams scored with 1:45 left to make the score 4-3. Redbank just missed tying the score in the closing seconds when Peyton Smith of C-L was able to slide across the goal and kick a shot out of bounds as time was running out.
“I have to give Redbank a lot of credit for coming back like they did,” said Montgomery. “We were playing shorthanded because of a red card, so we had to play a little more of a defensive posture. Peyton made a huge save at the end there when our goalie was out of position as he slid and knocked that ball out of bounds.”
C-L finished with 13 shots with Monrean making nine saves. Tyler Bingham made four saves on seven shots for the Bulldogs.
“Our keeper is only a sophomore, and he didn’t play last year because we had an all-conference goalie in there,” said Scott. “He just seems to be getting better and better although he still needs to work on his communication a bit, but he’s definitely improving as the season is going along.”