Dark Horse soccer got one of its biggest wins of the season, beating huge conference rivals Wallace-Rose Hill Monday night 3-1. Equally impressive, senior and Horses leader Ivan Ponce scored his 29th goal, tying the single-season record.
Clinton kept the Bulldogs on their heels for the majority of the game, forcing them to play their tempo and pace the entire match. The crowd was also roaring the whole time, being that 12th man the Horses needed to help exert its dominance over the Wallace Bulldogs.
“Man, we had fantastic support tonight from our crowd,” said CHS coach Brad Spell. “I just really want to thank them for coming out and helping by cheering us on the way they did. It’s my hope they comeback and give us equal support later this week when we take on the number one team in the conference East Duplin.”
The Horses’ first goal was almost squandered, Ivan Ponce fired off a shot near the goal but was denied by the keeper. Luckily a host of white jerseys were around as Ashton Tyndall cleaned up the deflection giving Ponce the assist and putting them ahead 1-0.
The game progressed slowly with both defenses being walls for one another but CHS wouldn’t be kept from scoring. They were back in front of the goal treating once again as Sam Holloman touched a perfect pass to Jacob Bauman. Bauman put the shot in the net and increase their lead to 2-0.
Clinton then got a chance for an easy point, a foul call on a hand ball near the Bulldogs goal gave Ponce the chance to extend their lead on a penalty kick. The Horses goal scoring leader didn’t disappoint, putting in a grounded shot to the left corner giving him the record tying 29th goal. With that they cemented a 3-0 lead over Wallace.
Though they had the game pretty much wrapped up, CHS did slack off and were out played in the last 20 minutes allowing the Bulldogs to score its only goal of the night.
“I’m glad we got the win but I wasn’t happy with the way we played in those last 20 minutes of the game, they completely out played us,” said Spell. “We got a little comfortable and slacked off some when it looked like we had the game wrapped up. That’s something were going to have to talk about and correct going forward.”
“One thing I always tell my guys it this, we play for the standing not for score,” Spell concluded.
With this big win the Dark Horses are now 9-2 in the conference, only a game behind the top team in the conference, East Duplin. They get their chance to tie for first on Wednesday when they take on the 10-1 Panthers on the road.
Reach Michael Hardison at email@example.com. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter @SampsonInd.