WILKES-BARRE – Time after time Cal Lisman and his Meyers teammates came up empty trying to finish a score against Old Forge in the District 2 Class A boys soccer play-in game.
Lisman himself missed on about a half of dozen opportunities either being a step off on a pass from a teammate or inches away from placing the ball in the net.
But the junior stuck with it and finally struck goal. Not once, but twice in the final 14 minutes to lead the Mohawks past the Blue Devils 2-0 on Tuesday at Wilkes-Barre Memorial Stadium.
You just got to keep everybody up, and our defense really helped us out by keeping the score zero-zero, Lisman said. We just had so many (chances) and our defense was helping us out and you just knew one had to come.
Up next for the Mohawks (6-11) is a date with top-seeded Mountain View (11-0) Friday at 3:30 p.m. Mountain View has been the topic of controversy lately in the District 2 soccer universe. The Eagles defeated Old Forge 24-1 last week in their regular season finale and coach Roger Thomas was suspended for two games. MV was moved from playing in Lackawanna League Division I with better competition the last several years to being in Division III against weaker opponents this season. The Eagles outscored their opponents 104-4 in league games. The Eagles are a state championship-caliber team and Meyers coach Jack Nolan is aware of the firepower Mountain View entails. The coach has what could be a perfect gameplan by imitating how Holy Redeemer upset unbeaten No. 1 seed Dallas two years ago in the opening round by taking the game to a shootout and being victorious after that.
We're going to play defense and if we can keep the score close and be zero-zero (after regulation) get to a shootout it becomes anybody's game, Nolan said. I reminded them every practice near the end of the season what Holy Redeemer did to Dallas. We're going to pack the box as best we can and hope we get out of there. If we get to a shootout then we become an even team.
Early in Tuesday's match, the Mohawks and Blue Devils played scoreless with both having an equal amount of opportunities and coming up short. Meyers held an advantage in shots, 11-8 in the first half, and the teams combined for 13 corner kicks in the first 40 minutes during a heavy, driving rain.
Meyers added five more shots on goal in the second half before Lisman received a pass from Mauricio Rey and slipped the ball on the ground to the right of Old Forge keeper David Chromy and into the net for a 1-0 lead with the clock reading 13:38.
Almost exactly nine minutes later, Lisman got a cross pass from Jarek Hernandez and slotted the ball into the net to seal the victory with 4:32 left in the game as the Mohawks advanced to the district tournament for the third straight season and the seventh time in the last eight seasons.
It was a very fast pace because it's the turf and then it was pouring the whole game, Lisman noted. Hopefully we'll get a win in the playoffs and keep going.
Second half: 1. MEY, Cal Lisman (Mauricio Rey) 13:38; 2. MEY, Lisman (Jarek Hernandez) 4:32
Shots: OF 13, MEY 20; Saves: OF 7 (David Chromy), MEY 8 (Adam Casey); Corners: OF 6, MEY 12.
Kenny Kocher scored two goals to lead Lake-Lehman to a victory over Honesdale in the District 2 Class 2A play-in game.
Kris Konicki added a goal while Chris Edkins chipped in two assists for Lake-Lehman, which will play at top-seeded Dallas at 3:30 p.m. on Friday
First half: 1. LL, Kenny Kocher (Chris Edkins) 33:27; 2. LL, Kris Konicki (Edkins) 15:22; 3. LL, Kocher (Austin Harry) 13:36
Second half: 1. HON, David Kirk :29
Shots: HON 4, LL 12; Saves: HON 7 (Cole Stengel), LL 2 (Colin Masters); Corners: HON 2, LL 9.