On opening night of the 2020 boys soccer season Evergreen lost to the Lake Flyers.
Since then the ever improving, and very young Vikings, have gone 5-0-1 with their latest victory a 9-0 drubbing of Paulding at Pifer Field Tuesday afternoon.
“When we started out it was starting with basics,” explained first-year Viking mentor Dave Skoczyn. “I think you have to start there. I think when the kids got the grasp of what we were trying to do basically then we could start putting in tactical stuff. We got them to pass and move and get good things going, but I think if we didn’t start simple, like with ‘A’ we weren’t going to go forward.”
It didn’t take long for the Viking basics to have an impact.
Tyson Woodring hooked up with Evan Lumbrezer sliding through the slot for the Vikings’ first goal with 30:35 left in the first half, then it took Lumbrezer just 15 seconds to double the score.
The junior forward stole a Paulding pass and went solo on the net, punching one past the goalie for a 2-0 lead.
Lumbrezer wasn’t done for the night as he found Alex Peete rolling down the middle with a perfect feed, and Peete split two defenders for Evergreen’s third goal with 25:20 to go.
Then it was Lumbrezer again, taking a pass from Woodring, muscling off a defender for a right-to-left cross 57 ticks later for a 4-0 advantage.
After scoring a pair of assists, Woodring took a punch upfield from Brady Kanneman, and his left-footed bender made it 5-0 before the half.
With Skoczyn subbing freely in the second half, sophomore Matt Hassen got into the scoring column when he nailed a one-timer from Peete halfway through the second half to institute the running clock rule at 6-0.
Thirty-four seconds after Hassen’s goal, a defender playing forward, Austin Lumbrezer, celebrated his senior night activities with a left-footer into the net on a pass from Evan Lumbrezer.
A pair of Viking freshmen scored late when Logan Peebles got a breakaway and beat the goalie to the ball and bumped it in with 13 minutes left.
Brayden Bull later got a right-to-left feed from Peebles for a score for the final Evergreen goal.
“When I came in I told the boys that it isn’t about the individual,” Skoczyn said of his team comradery. “It’s got to be about the team. You can see when guys who don’t get off the bench very much go and score goals that these guys (referring to his starters) were just as excited or moreso as the guys on the field were. That kind of energy and togetherness is going to propel any team. We may not have the individual talent but we sure have a good team effort. Teams will beat individuals all day long.”
Jon Burnep turned away six Paulding shots for the shutout, being tested twice, one a sliding save on a crossing shot and the other he went from left-to-right across the goal to spear a header that was seemingly heading into the net.
“He is like a wall back there,” Skoczyn said of Burnep. “The guys always complain about him at practice because they can never score on him. I think we have one of the best goalies in the area, everything he does is so smooth. He doesn’t get excited, everything is calm. He just grabs the ball and moves on with things. We really like that back there.”
Evergreen hosts league favorite Wauseon Thursday with a 7 p.m. kickoff.
Reach Joe Blystone at email@example.com