Tahlequah Daily Press

Sports

April 2, 2014

Edged by Edison

Tahlequah soccer teams drop District 5A-4 openers at home against Edison

The Tahlequah boys soccer team lost 2-0 to Edison in the District 5A-4 opener Tuesday night at Doc Wadley Stadium.

The Tigers outshot the Eagles 9-6, but most chances were from distance and the home team had a tough time finding dangerous scoring opportunities from inside the 18-yard penalty box.

“We held the ball a little too much at times, and we didn’t have anybody coming down the middle to finish up when we had opportunities to make crosses,” Tahlequah coach Gary McClure said. “Edison did a great job of condensing everything down tight the closer we got to goal.”

The two teams played to a scoreless draw in the opening 40 minutes, but Kristtian Busquets was able to use a deep cross in the fifth minute of the second half to put the visitors on top 1-0. Ryan Pendleton added an insurance marker four minutes later on a breakaway, and Edison’s back line stayed strong for the final 30 minutes of play to force the shutout.

“We didn’t do a great job of tracking on the back side tonight. They were able to get their first goal because of that,” said McClure, whose club dropped to 2-3 overall and 0-1 in district play. “Our kids thought there was an offside call, but I always tell them you have to play like the official missed the call and continue until you hear the whistle. I thought the officials did a really great job tonight.”

The 11th-ranked Eagles (5-2, 1-0) attempted numerous counter attacks and were called offside a whopping 14 times in the match. One of those calls in the first half negated what would have been a wide-open breakaway goal.

“We like to run a trap in the back and our defenders are really good about keeping everybody pushed up,” McClure said. “That makes it really difficult to hit through balls. Even when they are able to make that pass, it usually forces a long enough run that gives our keeper a chance to make a play.”

McClure also said he was encouraged with how the team performed against an opponent who brought elements to the pitch Tahlequah had not seen recently.

“I knew (Edison) was going to have a lot speed, and it was a physical game. I thought that brought us out of our game,” McClure said. “We really hadn’t seen that much speed in about three weeks, and it got us in default mode. We started playing a little kickball, and that was disappointing. We have to clean up our game, look for the simple passes and stop trying to force everything forward.”

Tahlequah will get a second crack at a first district victory when they host McAlester on Tuesday.

Girls: Edison 9, Tahlequah 0

Kaja Cremin logged a hat trick — with the help of Tahlequah’s Samantha Chaffin — as Class 5A No. 10 Edison coasted in its district opener.

The Eagles (4-3, 1-0) wasted little time in scoring their first goal. Anna Langholz buried the ball in the back of the net when Chaffin failed to clear the ball out of the box.

Edison would add three more goals in the first half — two by Cremin. Edison’s senior forward scored her first on a breakaway, and her second game via a corner kick, which Chaffin hit into her own net.

Edison’s final goal of the first half was off the foot of Shelby Straight from 40 yards out.

In the second half, Madison Morris scored the first of her two goals in the 37th minute. Morris would score exactly six minutes later on a penalty kick.

Sandwiched in between Morris’ two goals was Cremin’s third goal of the contest.

Amber Taylor scored Edison’s final two goals, one in the 22nd minute and the other with nearly nine minutes to play.

Tahlequah (1-4, 0-1) managed to get only five shots off in the game.

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