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Hornets fall to East Juniata in District Semis

by Ed Weaver - November 2, 2016

The Wellsboro Boys Soccer team’s season came to an end with a 5-1 loss to top seed East Juanita in the District IV Class A semi-finals on Tuesday, November 1 at Central Columbia High School.

The Tigers have had Wellsboro’s number the past two years, as they ended the Hornets’ season a year ago in a 4-0 loss at Loyalsock. This year, Wellsboro’s bid for an upset in the rematch came up short.

“Even though the score differential was four both years last year we had one shot at it wasn’t even on goal,” said head coach John Shaffer. “We had lots of opportunities, lots of shots. It could have been tied at halftime and going down a man and giving up a penalty kick just killed the momentum.”

The Tigers got on the scoreboard with 35:22 on the clock as Trevor Goodling passed the ball to Gabe Coder who sent a shot past senior Casey Hoover to make it 1-0, then went up 2-0 with just over 5 minutes left in the opening half on an Evan Watts goal assisted by Trent Watts.

Trailing 2-0 to start the second half, Wellsboro gained some momentum on their only goal of the game. Junior Gabe Leach sent a deep shot towards the back left corner of the goal that went over keeper Clay Sheaffer’s head to cut the score to 2-1 with 38:07 remaining.

“I told the kids to trust in their technique,” Shaffer said of his halftime pep talk. “We trained all summer on defensive technique and attacking technique and if we cleaned up a few things defensively and trusted our technique then we were gonna be in it and we got a goal.”

The goal gave the Hornets momentum to a 12 minute stretch in the half, but that eventually faded as Goodling fired a deep shot over Hoover’s head in the back right corner of the goal to push the lead to 3-1 with 26:35 remaining. Three minutes later the Tigers drew a penalty as junior Noah Fitch was called for a red card on a handball in the keeper box. Goodling lined up the penalty kick and sent it past a diving Hoover to make it 4-1 with 23:32 left on the clock.

East Juanita scored the game’s final goal with 12:20 remaining. Seth Strawser headed a corner kick to the goal that ended up bouncing junior Nic Ingerick to make it 5-1, ending the Hornets’ season.

“We knew EJ was good but we were as well. It’s a shame, a red card in the second half kinda changed the momemtum and gave them a penalty kick. Once we went down a man it was tough but we were in it,” Shaffer concluded.

East Juniata took 21 shots on goal to Wellsboro’s 6. Senior Josiah Hill (3), Leach (2), and sophomore Brett Rudy took all of the Hornets’ shots on the night. Sheaffer made 4 saves in net for East Juanita and Hoover made 12 for Wellsboro.

East Juanita also had an 11-2 advantage in corner kicks.

The loss ends the Hornets’ season with a 15-5 (11-3 NTL) record. The loss also marks the end of the careers of seniors Hill, Hoover, Jacob Singer, and Alex Freeman. Hill finishes his career as Wellsboro’s all-time scoring leader, both boys and girls, with 94 goals, 220 points, 32 assists, and 258 shots. Singer ended his career with 13 goals, 39 points, 13 assists, and 74 shots, and Freeman had 1 career goal and 2 career points on 3 shot attempts. Hoover finished with 207 career saves and 16 shutouts while allowing 47 goals.

Credits:

Idea/Concept: Ed Weaver
Videography: Cody Getz, Ethan Chabala
Video Editing: Andrew Moore
Writing: Ed Weaver
Anchor: Ed Weaver
Correspondent: Ed Weaver

Produced by Vogt Media
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