Three goals not enough for Marmion
Updated: September 24, 2011 7:05PM
Marmion managed to score three consecutive goals and yet it wasn’t enough as the Cadets’ strikes were sandwiched between pairs of scores by Glenbard North for a 4-3 Saturday victory that gave the Panthers the first-place trophy for the 18th Annual St. Charles East Invitational.
Despite the narrow final margin, Marmion’s effort was hardly title-worthy as made clear by head coach Kevin O’Connor’s frustrations over the Cadets slipping to 8-4-4.
“We did not play like a champion, we got the result we deserved,” O’Connor lamented. “The first goal (given up) was completely unacceptable. We really didn’t start play until we were down 2-0. That’s when we finally started to possess the ball,
“We just were not mentally sharp. On restarts, we usually shoot for a goal, for some reason we were passing off. Defensively we made enough mistakes to lose,” O’Connor added.
Glenbard North, which improved to 7-5-2, scored 10:52 into the contest when Ryan Anderson fed Jon Colucci for a seven-yarder from the right side. The Panthers remained on the attack and with 13 left before halftime, it was Colucci feeding a wide-open Ryan Scott for an eight-yarder straight in front of the cage.
The two-goal deficit served as wake-up call for Marmion as Mike Maley’s through ball enabled Joe Romanos to come in from the far left side for a nine-yard strike just 33 seconds after North’s second goal. The Cadets’ equalizer came just 48 seconds prior to intermission as Matt Switzer’s 34-yard free kick bounced between players from both teams and on into the net.
Marmion then took a 3-2 lead 7:23 into the second half when Maley’s team-best 10tth assist enabled Luke Elder to hit a 13-yard chip shot for his third goal of the year.
“Mike laid it off perfectly to me, so I just topped it in to the left, especially once I saw their keeper was off-balance and leaning,” Elder explained. “Our game plan comes down to smart possessions and we didn’t have those all game. We have to win every 50-50 ball and we cannot let the other team get shots off like we did.”
Case in point, Glenbard North’s tying goal came after Marmion failed to clear a ball that rolled through the goal crease and gave the Panthers a corner kick. Yhedia Akif parked three yards off the right post and simply tapped home Colucci’s corner kick with 23:42 to be played. Glenbard North’s Jeremy Utley won a 50-50 ball and sent a through ball up top that saw teammate Ryan Anderson got to with his head as Marmion keeper Brad White was rushing out. After flicking over White, Anderson finished into an empty net with 16:22 remaining.
“One of our goals going into this season was to win the St. Charles East tourney, so any time you accomplish a benchmark it’s a plus,” Panther coach Greg Chrisman said. “The swing of emotions was incredible for us, up two goals, down one, then win by one. We know we can depend on Jon to be involved in scoring, he’s that kind of player. While we had a rough start record-wise, we believe we can build upon this three-game win streak.”