CINCINNATUS — Some halftime adjustments — and maybe some better luck with a different official — helped the Cincinnatus Lions explode for four goals in the second half of their 5-1 victory over the Madison Blue Devils Monday at Fireman’s Field.
Three players were responsible for all of the Lions’ goals and assists — Jordan Larrabee (two goals), Cason Stafford (two goals, three assists) and Scott Schuyler (goal, assist).
The Lions got on the board early in the first half on the first of two Stafford-to-Larrabee connections, with Larrabee firing his goal home from the top of the 18-yard box in the fourth minute.
The Lions then went more than 45 minutes before they could find the net again. That was in large part to being called offside half a dozen times in the second half, with each call eliciting more and more frustration from the Lions spectators.
Lions coach Gordon Brown made some tactical and positional changes, but also admitted that shooting towards the opposite goal in the second half where the other referee was stationed — may have helped break out of their rut.
“We started doing more square balls going through, and that helped with the offside stuff,” Brown said. “Another thing we did is we moved two players around more … and offside is a tricky thing, because one ref sees offside one way and the other sees offside another way … we didn’t have a call in the second half.”
The Lions scored three goals in a 15-minute span to put the game out of reach. Larrabee’s second goal came in the 51st minute off a free kick that Stafford earned drawing a foul just inside midfield. Once Stafford launched the ball, Larrabee ran at breakneck speed to beat the last Madison defender and score.
Stafford got on the scoreboard in the 60th minute off a feed from Schuyler, then returned the favor to him five minutes later. Stafford would put the icing on the cake with an unassisted tally with 95 seconds remaining.
“I moved Scott to a center half and Cason up top,” Brown said. Cason is a better holding player so he can hold and Scott can get through, and it showed in the second half.”
But the Lions were denied a shutout at the very last moment when Jake Neidhart drew a free kick from 35 yards away from goal and hammered the ball from that spot all the way past Cincy goalie Kooper Vosburg with five seconds left.
“We practice those things all the time, and we didn’t execute,” Brown said. “Nobody stepped in front of the ball, nobody put a wall up, the keeper didn’t direct traffic, and that’s just not us. That tells you the kind of day we were having. That’s things we do automatically. Sometimes kids take advantage that you’re up 5-0 and forget to play the game of soccer. You gotta be ready.”
Cincy improved to 4-0 and will visit Otselic Valley Wednesday at 4:30 p.m.
DeRuyter 4, McGraw 3
The Rockets avenged their loss to McGraw last week in dramatic fashion by scoring three unanswered goals after falling behind 3-1 early in the second half.
Cam Daley scored the game-winner for the Rockets, Gavin Richardson had two goals and an assist and Ryder Forest had a goal. Tristan Worlock made 10 saves.
For the Eagles, Jackson Card had two goals, Mason Eaton had a goal and Caleb Knickerbocker had two assists, while Nolan Kinckerbocker made 15 saves.
McGraw 2, DeRuyter 1
The Eagles got the win on their Senior Night, with Chelsey Cowen scoring the game-winner midway through the second half and Jaiden Cortez making six saves in net.
Emily Fish scored the other McGraw goal.
Brooke Judson scored with less than two minutes left for DeRuyter to cut the McGraw lead in half, but it was too little too late.
Kelsey Brown made 13 saves for the Rockets.
Cincinnatus 6, Madison 0
Deslinn Rutan and Kyla Sustad each posted a hat trick to fuel the Lions’ blowout of Madison.
Mia Stirone made two saves for the clean sheet.
Odessa-Montour 6, Marathon 5 (OT)
Brooke Tillotson had two goals, including the overtimeforcing goal with five minutes left in regulation, but OdessaMontour outscored the Olympians 2-1 in overtime to salvage the win.
Audrey Jasper, Anna Hoyt and Abby Tallman also scored for Marathon.
Cortland 3, Oswego 1
Kylie David played libero for the first time this season and excelled with 19 digs and eight aces.
Lexi Zacek had one of her best offensive nights of the season with nine kills.
Dryden 3, Moravia 2
Ashley Hoyte had 17 assists, four digs and three aces and Maggie Murphy had 11 digs, four aces and four kills to fuel the Lions’ victory.