Panthers open boys soccer season with 6-2 win

Using a football reference, the Delta Panthers went over the top on Emmanuel Christian.

To use a futbol reference, Delta went over the top on Emmanuel Christian.

Time and time again in the first half, the Panthers caught the Warriors defense pinching upfield and scored on four breakaways and parlayed those into a 6-2 win to open the 2017 boys soccer season Saturday.

“We stepped up a lot,” said Panther coach Charlie Franklin. “We communicated much better. We’ve come together as a team in the last few weeks.”

Allen Schwambach put the Panthers ahead in the first 10 minutes on a penalty kick, then came the barrage of run out goals.

Jared Gilders scored on a crossing shot on assists from Schwambach and Joe Durfey, then scored again seven minutes later on a loose ball breakout to make it 3-0.

Schwambach scored again from the left side on an upfield pass from Kyle Hadlley to make it 4-0 before EC could fill the net.

Gunnar Parmalee’s header put the Warriors on the board in the 36th minute but Gilders countered with his third goal of the half three minutes later on another pass from Hadley to make it 5-1.

Panther goalie Tyler McCullough made two crucial saves in the last minute to keep EC from cutting into the lead.

“Tyler has really stepped up so far this year,” explained Franklin. “He really didn’t play a lot last year, but he stepped up to be our keeper. He really didn’t have one and he’s worked hard on mechanics and stopping the ball.”

Subbing freely after the half, the Panthers maintained their four goal advantage as Simon Munger scored from the right side to counter Carter Brown’s tally for the Warriors.

For the game, Emmanuel took 18 shots on goal and McCullough made nine saves. Delta had 15 shots on the net.

By Joe Blystone

For the Expositor