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Boys JV Soccer Week of January 10th Update

By Mark Lumpkin, 01/10/22, 8:00PM CST


The boys JV-A soccer team kicked off the regular season this week under Coach Huntsman’s tutelage with two home games, facing Katy High School and Elkins High School.  The Katy game on Tuesday night was a hard-fought defensive battle, with both squads employing defensive weighted formations, providing neither team with many scoring opportunities.  The squads battled to a scoreless tie at the half, due to the strength of stellar defending.  The second half was largely more of the same, with both teams trading punches of passing combinations and shots on goal. The tie was broken up by the only goal of the game, as Katy scored off of a slick deflection of a free kick just outside of the box midway through the second half.  The Spartans pressed late in the game for the tying goal, but were unable to break through the Katy defensive formation and suffered a 1-0 loss. Fabo Ndayishimye had the two best scoring opportunities playing as the striker for the Spartans.  His offensive positioning allowed for multiple counterattacks, but he was ultimately thwarted by the swarming Katy defense, similar to what our football Spartans saw against Katy in the playoffs. 

The Elkins game on Friday night saw the Spartans dressed sharply in fan-favorite black jerseys and white shorts under brisk and windy weather.  The shorthanded Spartan squad employed an aggressive mindset offensively, especially in the first half, which saw the Spartans with a handful of shots on goal.  Ball movement was strong throughout the match, as Stratford had many beautiful combinations, methodically moving the ball up the field. Unfortunately, the Spartans were not able to capitalize in the 0-0 tie, despite the valiant efforts of the floppy-haired midfield tandem of Bennett Swires and Luke Hammer to break away for a goal late in the game, as well as a handful of solid shots on goal from set pieces throughout the game.  Goalkeeper Yovanny Rodriguez was the Spartan of the game, with a clean sheet and fantastic game that included a couple of Sportscenter Top Ten highlight saves. The defense was led by the stellar play of center back Philmore Jeon, who chased down the speedy Elkins strikers on several goal-scoring opportunities. He made a critical open net defensive save after the Elkins squad was able to dribble past goalkeeper Yovanny Rodriguez late in the game.  Overall, it was a well-played game for the Spartans squad, and the upcoming season looks promising.