By Jeffrey Kauffman, August 31, 2008
Four local high school soccer teams converged on the Northside complex Saturday and all were looking for answers to the upcoming season. The 11th Annual Mechanicsburg Soccer Boosters Tournament gave Trinity, Camp Hill, Mechanicsburg, and Carlisle the opportunity to play twice and see where they stand for the early part of the season.
In the end, it was Carlisle stepping up to win the final 3-2 by converting on 11 penalty kicks against Mechanicsburg, as Bryce Merwine came up with a huge save on the 12th kick and got to watch senior captain Tyler Getz convert his to give the Herd the win. The actual score would have been listed 2-2(11-10) but has changed in recent years to one goal so it was 3-2 (PK’S)
The first eight shooters for each team scored on well-placed shots. Goalkeepers for both teams got fingertips on four shots, but each was hit hard enough to go into the net.
Mechanicsburg scorers were Matt Steele, Jon DeNicola, Austin Martz, Cort Hutchison, Matt Warren, Garret Murphy, Craig Foer and Scott Inderbitzen.
Carlisle scorers were West, Getz, Dexter Lamparter, Merwine, Trevor Shull, Billy Zahos, Macon Walker and Ari Brouwer.
Sean Swidersky’s blast hit the corner of the crossbar but Kyle Green was able to save the shot of Robert Gilroy to move his team into the 10th shooter. David Strausbaugh hit for the Wildcats and Tyler Shimandle equaled the match. Steele and West each scored a second time to set the stage for Merwine’s save and Getz’s winner.
In the final, Chase West gave the Herd a quick one-goal lead as he ripped a laser off the bottom of the crossbar only 22 seconds into the contest. Both teams had several other key chances in the first ten minutes but goalies Shane Cowoski of the Wildcats and Bryce Merwine were up to the task for their teams.
Brennan Zizzi gave the Herd a two-goal advantage as his blast deflected off a defender and past Cowoski in the final three minutes of the half.
Both teams dug in for the physical second half with the Herd trying to fight off the speed of the Wildcats. A Herd mistake gave the maroon squad life as a clear from the goal line appeared to hit off the back of the Herd keeper and bound into the goal for an own goal.
Mechanicsburg appeared to be quicker to the ball while the Herd appeared to be waiting for help rather than attacking the ball. The Wildcats finally got the equalizer in the final four minutes as the Herd failed to clear a ball from the penalty area and Craig Foer was able to slot one into the corner.
“It was a great game, especially of halves,” added Herd coach Brandon Eiserman. “We played well in the first half and then we gave them a goal in the second half and they got the momentum and they were a bit fitter than us. The kids gave it all they had. Some guys played a lot and we left home at 7:30 so it has been a long day. I thought we showed a lot of guts. Bryce made a big save-he guessed right on 9 out of 11 but the kids put on a shooting clinic by hitting the side net. I thought Bryce played great, Zizzi and Dexter played well along with Tyler. Everybody played well for two games today and now we have to continue playing well.
“As a team, We played really well and played together today. This was a turnaround hopefully for the year. We got a big help from our younger guys, “said Getz. “This will be different this year. Last year we won the tournament but struggled as a team after that.”
Cowoski had a solid wall in front of him as well as Hutchison, Murphy, Scott Inderbitzen and Foer cleared everything out of the backfield.
“I was very happy with our play today We showed a lot of character and we got a chance to get some of our younger kids a chance to learn today,” added Mechanicsburg coach Tony Lougee. “Steele played fantastic and Garret Murphy played great. I think all of our kids played well. We get John Arnold back this week and we got some playing time for some of our younger kids and kids who didn’t play a lot last year.”
Mechanicsburg won the opener 4-0 over Trinity and the Herd outlasted a physical Camp Hill squad 2-0 in the morning games. Trevor Shull and Chase West tallied goals for the Herd. Trinity rallied from a 1-0 deficit to score two goals including a penalty kick from Derek Pawlush and a score from Scott Sajak to grab a 2-1 victory over the Lions in the consolation game. Brad Smith nodded home a Ben Danowitz dish for the Lion tally. It was the first of at least three contests between the two teams this season.
Notes: The all-tournament team was announced. They included: Alex Hogarth, Stephen Breuning, Derek Pawlush and Scott Sajac of Trinity, Ian Nisley, Brad Smith, Nick Kline, and Brandon Woodward of Camp Hill. Murphy, Foer, Jon DeNicola and Tyler Bohn of Mechanicsburg and West, Getz, Merwine and Lamparter of Carlisle.
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