Panthers dominate, advance in sectional

by Greg Ceilley
of The Review staff


CLAYTON LAUTENSCHLAEGER of Plymouth shoots the ball past two unidentified Xavier defenders and the Hawks’ goalie Bryan Geenen (right) in Thursday’s sectional soccer semifinals. — Photo by Doug Pierce CLAYTON LAUTENSCHLAEGER of Plymouth shoots the ball past two unidentified Xavier defenders and the Hawks’ goalie Bryan Geenen (right) in Thursday’s sectional soccer semifinals. — Photo by Doug Pierce PLYMOUTH – The Plymouth Panthers were in control most of the way en route to a 2-0 win over Appleton Xavier in a Division 3 boys sectional soccer semifinal match here Thursday afternoon.

The No. 1-seeded Panthers ran their winning streak to 10 and improved to 16-3-2 overall. The No. 4-seeded Hawks finished

14-7-3.

“We have been able to get better after every game and today was no different,” said Panther head coach Rommy Herrera.

“We were able to control the game and leave Xavier without options. The Panthers are focused and motivated.”

PHS seized a 1-0 lead on a goal by junior midfielder Ian Thiesenhusen at the 24:42 mark in the first half. The score came after a corner kick by PHS which senior forward Garrison Pierce received near the goal and then touched the ball to Thiesenhusen.


GARRISON PIERCE (upper right) and Plymouth teammate Adam Smith go for a header against Xavier’s Konnor Barth (left) in Thursday’s sectional soccer semifinals. Xavier’s Alex Lopez (9) and Noah Kippenhan watch. — Photo by Doug Pierce GARRISON PIERCE (upper right) and Plymouth teammate Adam Smith go for a header against Xavier’s Konnor Barth (left) in Thursday’s sectional soccer semifinals. Xavier’s Alex Lopez (9) and Noah Kippenhan watch. — Photo by Doug Pierce In the 26th minute Plymouth’s Mason Dale made a strong shot but it bounced off the right post.

PHS came right back on the attack again and upped its lead to 2-0 on a goal by sophomore midfielder Clayton Lautenschlaeger at the 30:32 mark in the opening half. Junior midfielder Anthony Vargas assisted on the goal which came on a shot inside the 18-yard penalty area.

The Panthers pressured the Hawks’ defense much of the first half en route to earning a 2-0 halftime lead. PHS had the ball in its offensive end of the field most of the opening half. The Panthers led 8-0 in shots on goal in the half.

Xavier’s Alex Lopez kicked a goal in the 34th minute of the first half but it was disallowed because PHS goalie Gabe Thull was obstructed as he got his hands on a free kick by the Hawks’ Noah Kippenhan. On the free kick, Thull was unable to possess the ball and Lopez then kicked the ball for an apparent goal.

Throughout most of the match the Panthers won possession, passed well, showed good teamwork, pressured the Hawks’ defense and showed outstanding hustle.

PHS led 12-2 in shots on goal. Thull made two saves and Xavier goalie Bryan Geenen had seven.

Xavier didn’t have a shot on goal until the 49:30 mark. The Hawks’ other shot on goal came at 77:50 on a free kick by Sam Kiesner which sailed directly to Thull.


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