After the opening two weeks of the 2017 season, the Patriots boys soccer team is walking away with pride.
Beginning with an extremely physical season opener at Bellmont, the boys went down 2-0 in the first half but managed to get one back before the half. The first goal of the season was scored by Zar Kan, and assisted by Zay Ya from a corner. Then after regrouping at the half, the boys came out in the second half with a great deal of energy. They were possessing the ball and playing good side to side soccer. Bellmont was becoming lackadaisical as they chased the ball back and forth. Then Connor Simmons hit Zar Kan on a chipped through ball. Upon receiving the pass, Zar had the goalie one on one and used his footwork and ball skills to throw off the goalie and dribble around him. Eventually slotting it home with the left foot and tying the game up at two. After the goal, the Patriots were electrified and were playing stellar soccer. The momentum was cut short, however, when the officials called for a water break. Coming out of the water break, Bellmont scored on two straight set pieces, making the score four to two. The game eventually ended at four to two, handing the Patriots a loss in their first contest of the season.
The following night the Patriot boys took a road trip down to Jay County, a conference match. Right from the start, the Patriots were clicking on all cylinders. Scoring five goals in the first half and three in the second, the Patriots walked away with an 8-2 victory. The goals were scored by Bobby Lomow, Zar Kan, and Zay Ya. Lomow and Zay Ya each had two goals, and Zar Kan had four. This was an excellent start for the Patriots in conference, and a step in the right direction toward winning a third consecutive ACAC championship.
On Wednesday Aug. 23, the boys hosted Fort Wayne South Side. This was the first home game of the season. South Side was a very tough opponent and the Patriots were up for the challenge. After a tough first half the boys went into the half tied up at zero. Shortly into the second half the Patriots scored on a header by Bobby Lomow off a throw in by Connor Simmons. South Side eventually knotted the score up at one, and the game ended in a tie. The game may have ended as a draw but it was a mental victory for the Patriots.
Then, a day later, the boys traveled to Garrett High School. This was a very scrappy game, and the officials were keeping the players in line. Each team received a yellow card during the course of the game. Aside from the tight officiating, Zar Kan had one of the best performances of his life, scoring all four of the team’s goals. Putting him at ten goals for the season. The game ultimately ended in a draw at four to four but the Patriots showed that they could keep up with just about any team. Every time the Patriots went down, they regrouped and worked together to put the ball back in the net and even up the score.
The Patriots will play again at home on Monday, Aug. 28. They will be hosting the Wayne Generals. This should be a very good game, and we would like to see a big crowd there to support your Heritage Patriots soccer team.
Article by Connor Simmons
2016 Photo by Rachel Blair