Pettisville pulled away by scoring three goals in the final 20 minutes as the Blackbirds beat Swanton at home in boys soccer Monday 5-1.
“Late in the game, we just got gassed,” Swanton coach Joe Hensley said.
Zakkai Kaufmann got the rally going when he scored from long range with 20:38 remaining in the game to put Pettisville ahead 3-1. Ten minutes later, Blake Eyer tallied a goal and the capper came when Detric Yoder headed in a goal off a great feed from Bryce Beltz.
The Blackbirds had a 2-0 lead at halftime. Yoder opened the scoring by taking a pass from Theary Eash in the corner for the finish. Eli Grieser made it 2-0 with his goal with 6:19 left in the half.
“One of my central midfielders needed to be on his game,” stated Pettisville assistant coach Shawn Kaufmann, who was filling in for an absent Barnaby Wyse. “It kind of starts in there. Once he got that going, it was much better. The team really needed this.”
Swanton had shots, but they couldn’t get behind keeper Brayden Barrett. Wyatt Lake and Donovan Avalos each had shots in the first half that were turned away.
“He is very, very comfortable on that line,” Kaufmann said of the sophomore keeper for the Blackbirds. “He’s so fundamentally sound and he does a great job.”
Barrett suffered an injury and Canidate Vickery played the final 20 minutes in net for the Blackbirds.
“We were moving some pieces around in spots that was a little different,” admitted Kaufmann. “They filled in really, really well.”
The Bulldogs did break through in the second half. Xander Gilsdorf found an open spot on a cross and finished with 31:05 to play to cut the Pettisville lead to 2-1.
“We just have to finish, that’s the big thing,” mentioned Hensley. “We have guys going away from the goal instead of going to the goal.”
Pettisville (3-3-2) hosts Liberty Center Thursday. Swanton (2-7) plays Thursday at Delta.
Reach Randy Roberts at firstname.lastname@example.org