On Monday the Hargrave Tigers (2-5) were locked in a tight game with the Carlisle Chiefs (5-2-2), but were left scoreless for the second time this season in the 1-0 loss. The Chiefs scored off of a defensive miscommunication and missed clearance in the 55th minute of play and held on to secure the victory.
The game was locked in a defensive battle for the better part of the contest until Carlisle forward Trey Gaylor played a bouncing ball forward in-behind the Hargrave defense where fellow Chief’s forward Jack Johnston was able to collect a loose ball from a miscommunication and missed clearance amongst the Tiger defense. Johnston took the hit from nearly 25-30 yards to catch Tiger goalkeeper Nathan Bloom out of his box for the 1-0 advantage.
Hargrave was not able to find much on the offensive side of the ball as they were only able to test the Carlisle goalkeeper twice during the match on seven total shots. The Chiefs outshot the Tigers 10-7. However, Carlisle was able to put eight shots on net to test Bloom who finished with seven saves in the match. Carlisle was also whistled for nine fouls to Hargrave’s six, but the Tigers were unable to create nor convert any of the dead-ball opportunities.
The Hargrave defense once again played superbly led by senior defender Charles Field, and held one of the top scoring teams in the conference to just ten shots. With the assistance of senior Austin Koeneman, and juniors Mike Dalpini and Christian Cardenas the Tiger defense along with Bloom in net look to become one of the better defensive units in the conference. In three of the five Hargrave losses the Tiger defense has only given up one goal including a 1-1 tie of Paul VI that the Tigers eventually lost in a penalty shoot-out. Despite the loss for the Tigers Bloom still has a superb .815 save percentage with 44 total saves on the season.
The Tigers will look to rebound, after two days of much needed rest, when they travel to take on Roanoke Valley on Thursday, Sep 20. Following the Carlise game the Tigers had played five games in five days, and look to take advantage of their two days off to regenerate physically and mentally as they prepare for the match on Thursday.