MOUNT VERNON — The Mount Vernon boys soccer team got a lesson Tuesday in what it takes to be considered one of the top teams in the state.
Hilliard Bradley used its speed and teamwork to harass the Yellow Jackets all over the field, rolling to a 2-0 victory in Ohio Capital Conference action at Yellow Jacket Stadium.
“They played a nice game. They hit their targets and ran off them. There’s not too many teams that have done that to us. They’re ranked for a reason,” said Mount Vernon coach Scott Dapprich.
The Yellow Jackets (6-2-1 overall, 1-2 OCC) hung with the Jaguars, ranked ninth in the state in Division II, throughout a scoreless first half. Both sides had opportunities, but neither was able to dent the scoreboard thanks to strong play by the defenses and goalies.
“I thought in the first half, the kids actually played pretty well. We knew they would be tough. They had some quick transitions, much quicker than I think our guys realized. But, we were able to maintain things in the first half,” said Dapprich. “Chris (Omahan) made some nice saves that helped us keep in the ball game. And, Collin (Riley) did a nice job sweeping and covering their runs in the back.”
Bradley (6-1-1, 3-0) broke through early in the second half, scoring when Herman Paniagua headed the ball into the goal off a nice cross from Sam Darling.
The Jackets didn’t go away, though, missing several opportunities in the second half. Bradley keeper Matt Parthun was able to make some nice saves, and some shots went just wide as Mount Vernon went scoreless on the night.
Omahan made a couple of nice saves in the second half to keep things close until Bradley got a break with 8:18 left. Mount Vernon was called for a foul in the box, giving Bradley the opportunity for a penalty kick. Darling made the Jackets pay, beating Omahan to the left and giving the Jaguars an insurmountable 2-0 lead.\