Boys surpass Elmira in soccer victory

Benny Westcott

With a 2-1 home win Wednesday, Sept. 7, against Elmira, the Sweet Home boys soccer team improved its record to 2-1 for the young season.

The Class 3A Elmira squad fell to 0-2.

“I felt like we did a pretty good job getting into the attacking third,” Huskies Head Coach Eric Stutzer said, noting that his team put 27 shots on goal against the Falcons. “The thing that we really struggled with was making the most of the opportunities we had. We were kicking the ball right into their keeper’s hands a lot, and were also bombing balls over the top quite a bit. So one of the things we want to work on is making sure we take advantage of opportunities.”

He said that for the most part, the Huskies were doing just that in the attacking third against Klamath Union, whom Sweet Home beat 5-2 on the road Aug. 29. But not so much in the Elmira game.

“We did pretty well getting wide,” he said. “But we need to play with a little more unity and even a little wider on the field. That will make a big difference.”

Stutzer thought Elmira’s sole goal, which came near the end of the game, shouldn’t have happened.

“We just weren’t marking our guy,” he said. “We got a little bit tired and got out of position. When our defender stepped out of position, their guy was able to hit the slot and go one-on-one with our keeper, which is not something that we want to be happening.”

Stutzer said Elmira had only eight shots on goal, only five of which were on frame. Keeper Evan Towry made five saves for Sweet Home.

Additionally, the coach said his team has struggled on corner kicks, something it’s working to improve.

But the Huskies have been creating opportunities.

“We’re getting into the attacking third,” Stutzer said. “It’s one of our major goals throughout the season.”

He noted that the team has put 60 or more shots on goal in the first three games.

“That’s absolutely amazing compared to where we were,” he said. “But we’re just not getting them in the net. We’re not taking advantage of those opportunities when we have them.”

The Huskies scored both their goals in the first half. Ben Tolman put the ball in the net for the first score, assisted by Colton Savri. The second goal came on a Savri breakaway.

Sweet Home’s Tuesday, Sept. 13, home game against East Linn Christian Academy came after The New Era’s press time.

The Huskies host Stayton at 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 22, to kick off league play.

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