Boy’s soccer seeks win against Scott County

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By Matt Birkholtz

The season didn’t start out the way Braves soccer coach Dave Schmitt wanted after his team fell to Boone County 4-1 on Aug. 18.

“It’s very tough because that was not the way we wanted to play,” he said. “We want to be aggressive and be the team that is attacking and it not be in reverse.”

Senior midfielder Brian Chapman provided the only offense for the Braves, but he still felt the team wasn’t playing to their potential.

“After halftime, we made some alterations that we probably shouldn’t have, because we just fell apart after giving up a long goal,” he said. “We weren’t conditioned well enough to stick with Boone County and just didn’t have the energy to stick with them. We let two more goals after that”

Chapman scored the first goal of the game on either side, celebrating all the way to the midfield and pointing to former Braves soccer player Lincoln Howe in the stands, before doing a flip on the field.

“It felt great. I was trying to set up Austin Anglin for the foul and then taking that free kick, I thought I was going to mess it up and actually hit it just right,” he said. “I was talking to Howe before the game and said he should stand up in the stands if I scored and I would point and wave. The flip was just instinct.”

Schmitt said there was two areas where the team was lacking in the Boone County game, which will need to be fixed before they play Scott County at 7:30 p.m. Aug. 25.

“Our man-to-man on the defensive end needs to get better,” he said. “We were good initially, but then as the play was going on we would let go of our man. We need to move our feet, stay with people and not lose them. Our transition from defense to offense needs to get better. Seemed like it was hard to get our ball through and to the strikers. That is all about experience and effort. It is just a matter of players making smart runs and transitioning quickly in possession of the ball. Those will be the main emphasis this week.”

A bright spot for the Braves in the first game was freshman goalkeeper Jordan Kearns, even after allowing four goals in the game.

“Kearns is the reason the game wasn’t worse,” Schmitt said. “His first game as a goalkeeper was a spectacular job, but we need to get better and our inexperience was showing last week.”

That inexperience, Schmitt said, can’t only be a reason for losses all season.

“We can’t use that as an excuse every week. Guys are going to need to step up and get the job done,” he said.

Last season, Scott County defeated the Braves 2-1 on Oct. 5.

“It will be tough game, because we lost a whole varsity team last year and we got a whole new team stepping up for us this year,” Chapman said. “They are really physical and we just need to be physical with them. We need to bump around with them and not get beat on the ball.”

Schmitt wouldn’t speculate specifically who needs to step up for the Braves, emphasizing the whole team and for the forwards and midfielders to get to the ball.

“It’s going to have be more than one person and that is true about every soccer game,” he said. “Our defense, our corner kick defense especially. We have given up a goal on corner kicks every game including the scrimmages. That is unacceptable to give up that many. Our strikers and forwards need to get back on the ball and get aggressive in the game.”