Boys Soccer: Abel Guzman’s strike propels Morton to victory

Updated: September 20, 2012 9:39PM

Morton’s tuneup for Sunday’s Pepsi Showdown final didn’t go as well as its first meeting against Hinsdale South.

The undefeated and defending Class 3A state champion Mustangs had a much tougher time than their first meeting this season against the West Suburban Gold rival Hornets.

Senior Abel Guzman scored the game’s only goal Thursday night with 34:56 remaining in the game. Morton won 1-0. Guzman scored his 12th goal of the season after a scoreless first half when he burst through the penalty area while changing speeds on a Hornets defender. His left-footed rip went untouched by goalkeeper Grant Morford, who made six saves in the game while facing 14 other shots in the game.

Morton (15-0, 3-0) plays Lyons (9-2-1) in the Pepsi Showdown final at 12:15 p.m. Sunday at Toyota Park in Bridgeview.

The Hornets (2-9, 1-3) did not take their first shot until Nathan Michaelis’ attempt with 9:28 to go in the game. His dribbler from 30 yards out was saved by Ian Chacon. Michaelis also took Hinsdale South’s second shot of the game five minutes later.

“We started off slow,” Morton defender Joel Leon said. “Our intensity was kind of low.”

Morton defeated Hinsdale South 3-1 in the opening game of Hinsdale Central’s Devil Cup Aug. 23 at Morton. Hinsdale’s Jordan Wood scored first in that game, but the Hornets could not keep the lead. The Hornets have lost six of their last seven games.

“It is taking us longer for those pieces to come together, but our game plan worked the second time,” Hinsdale coach James Van Denburgh said.

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