Girls roll Redettes, boys eke out win
The Mt. Pleasant girls’ soccer team rolled through Centerville with a 5-0 win in their season opener Tuesday at East Lake Park. The Panther boys opened with a nail-biter, winning the home match against the Big Reds, 3-2, in double overtime.
In the girls’ match, Holly Long provided a quick start for the Panther offense with a goal in the second minute of the match.
Megan Myers, a student who transfered to Mt. Pleasant from a school in Oregon, scored her first goal as a Panther to give the team a 2-0 halftime lead.
Myers came back in the 55th minute to net her second goal of the match.
Jasmine Craff and Hattie Liechty scored in the 65th and 87th minutes, respectively, to give the Panthers their final score.
Long had two assists on the evening.
“Our midfield controlled the majority of the field, and the few opportunities Centerville had were stopped by the defense of Megan Schneider, Mila Argueta, Kathryn Chabal and Lauren Hillman,” Coach Ed Chabal said.
Hillman, the keeper, had four saves in goal for the Panthers.
“This game was a great opportunity to get some of the younger players in for some varsity experience,” Chabal said.
In the boys’ match that followed, the Panthers fell behind 1-0 early, but Bo Vitale — last year’s leading scorer — tied the game 17 minutes into the first half with a goal for Mt. Pleasant, assisted by Zoom Gwamna.
Centerville took the lead again with a penalty kick late in the first half, and they took 2-1 lead into halftime.
Nearly all of the second half went by scoreless, but once again, Vitale came up with the goal to tie the game.
With two seconds left in regulation, he found the back of the net on an assist from Brach Prough and forced overtime.
There was no score in the first 10-minute overtime, but 2:30 into the second overtime, Yiannis Steryannis snuck one past the Centerville keeper after a corner kick by Vitale to give Mt. Pleasant the game-winning goal.
Panther keeper Michael Alderson finished the match with nine saves.
“Alderson made some saves that kept us in the game and gave us the opportunity to tie the game up at the end of the second half there,” Coach Neil Schmitz said.
Overall, he was happy with the win, but he knows that his team can play better.
“I would have to say we did not play as well as we hoped, and that we are capable of playing a lot better, based on our preformance in the scrimmage against Oskaloosa,” he said.
“But I’m happy we came out with the victory, and proud of the way the guys hung in there, and never stopped fighting,” he added. “We’re looking forward to (playing at) Fairfield on Monday.”
The girls’ next match will be at Ottumwa on Thursday.