Whether they like it or not, the future is now. And the Grangers do like it.
“We’re looking at a younger team. We’re a work in progress. We’re finally getting a better idea of the game,” said Keita Placide, the head coach of the La-Grange High boys soccer team.
The Grangers took another step in the right direction on Wednesday night. They pitched a fit and won a 2-0 game over Callaway High. For most of the night this match was all defense and body tackles.
It was bloody good fun, this rivalry. The game was scoreless at halftime. The boys match was totally up for grabs. In the second half, LaGrange High was the team that scored something besides good defensive marks.
The Grangers broke the scoreless tie with a Logan Lopez 18-yard goal with 16:48 left in the game. La-Grange High would score a second goal nine minutes later on Michael Everett’s two-yarder.
It was good fundamental soccer for the Grangers, who are now 5-1-1 on the season. Young or not, this LaGrange High boys team is winning.
“Our soccer IQ is high,” said Placide.
The Callaway Cavaliers are currently riding a different thoroughbred. But the Cavs still aren’t horsing around despite their 0-4 record.
“We’re growing and getting there. We’re passing the ball. I know we’re learning and buying in. We are playing without four starters,” said coach Mike Petite, who is in his first season at Callaway High.
Petite’s team narrowly missed a chance to take a 10 lead early in the second half. Cavalier junior midfielder Noah Stephens bounced the ball off the top of the goal box on a scoring attempt from 35 yards.
It was tough luck for the Callaway High boys. But at least they played some feisty defense on this night at Callaway Stadium. The Cavaliers had the Grangers hogtied for most of the match with some superlative defense from freshman Tavian Smiley, senior Khaliq Swift, and juniors Ian Bryan and Coleman Arrington.
Chris Fernsler Sports Writer