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Bell rings up pair for Hubs

October 29, 2003|by TIM KOELBLE

koelble@herald-mail.com

As Tuesday night's Maryland Class 2A West quarterfinal boys soccer match neared its completion, Brandon Bell limped off the field with leg cramps.

When he was on the field, Bell delivered plenty of cramps to Walkersville as he scored a pair of goals to lead No. 1-ranked North Hagerstown (14-2) past the Lions 4-1 at School Stadium.

The senior midfielder was involved in a collision with Lions keeper Patrick Skovira in the 10th minute of the first half which sent Skovira to the sidelines.

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In the 22nd minute, Bell dribbled past a defender to the front right corner of the box and drilled a shot past substitute keeper Richie Gilbert for the Hubs' opening score.

Soon after, with Skovira back in the nets, Bell delivered a shot from 20 yards out that deflected off the top of the bar to teammate Mikael Tigrett, who reacted with a short pass back to Bell, paving the way for a second goal and a 2-0 halftime lead.

"We feel good about the win, but I don't think we played our best soccer tonight," coach Glen Singer said. "We played a gutsy game ... it was very physical. We didn't play with a lot of fire. Our defense didn't give (Walkersville) a lot of chances to score."

Nine minutes into the second half, Walkersville got on the scoreboard when Brian Beard took a shot off a pass from the corner and zoomed the ball past Brian Williamson, which set off a discussion between coaches and officials in which the goal was taken off the scoreboard but then put back in place.

No more than 30 seconds ticked off the clock after the dispute when North's Dan Ryan sent a corner shot through the box that Charlie Hamilton found with his foot to boot in past Skovira, taking any momentum Walkersville may have gained right out of the cage.

In the 30th minute, Bell was tackled point blank in the right corner, which gave the Hubs a penalty kick. Matt Morin tallied his 12th goal of the season, hitting the back of the nets to the right side.

"We didn't play 80 minutes with intensity," Walkersville coach Kevin Conley said. "There weren't too many glimmers out there. Three of the four goals (North) scored were from the weak side. And we had a mental lapse right after we scored and that was our misfortune."

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