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Men's Soccer: Harford's midfield dominates Hawks

October 10, 2012|By DANIEL KAUFFMAN | kauffman@herald-mail.com
  • Hagerstown's Osman Ramizov (7) battles Harford's Kelcee Jones (20) for the ball in the second half of Wednesday's Maryland JuCo men's soccer game.
By Ric Dugan/Staff Photographer

HAGERSTOWN — In soccer, the central midfield battle often determines which team wins and which team loses.

And so it was on Wednesday afternoon, when Harford Community College controlled the center of the field and thus controlled Hagerstown Community College for a 4-0 shutout in a Maryland JuCo Conference contest at HCC.

“They’re real experienced in the midfield, and that’s where we broke down,” Hawks coach Brian Eichelberger said. “So many times, we won the ball in the back and kicked it up to our strikers, where we normally flow through midfield. They took us out of our game plan, for sure.”

Harford (8-5, 6-3) dominated the first 20 minutes and took a 1-0 lead in the 10th minute when Dylan Tipton got free up the left side and sent a cross to Chris King near the right post. King’s first touch was a heavy one, but the ball found its way into the right side of the goal anyway.

“With our team, we’re all mental,” Eichelberger said. “The first goal was a cheap one.”

Harford should have doubled its lead in the 15th minute when two Owls broke free onto the end of a pass into the middle of the 6-yard box. But the players collided and Hawks keeper Chucky Kipe got to the ball.

HCC (9-6, 5-4) started making some positive advances up the sides of the field in the last 25 minutes of the first half and was playing Harford more evenly well into the second half.

Mamadou Jallow ripped a hard 25-yard shot in the 58th minute that Owls keeper Christian Vito jumped to get his fingertips on, sending it glancing off of and over the top side of the crossbar.

Brandon Redman got his head on the ensuing corner kick but sent the ball just over the top left corner as the Hawks failed to score the equalizer.

Four minutes later, Felipe Botteon sent Glenn Grove free up the right side with a good pass, and Grove’s cross found Chris Cheelsman in the middle for a crucial goal that put Harford up, 2-0.

“Their second goal, we had the momentum and that broke our back,” Eichelberger said. “We’re definitely better than we showed today.”

In the 64th minute, King sent a pass through traffic to Raul Xavier in the center of the 18-yard box. Xavier fought off an HCC defender and scored for a 3-0 lead.

Grove finished the scoring in the 89th minute on a 30-yard free kick he fired low off the inside of the left post and in.

Harford finished with a 17-5 edge in shots. Kipe made four saves for the Hawks.

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