Lions battle Patriots at Calvary Baptist this week

September 14, 2018

Two of our local soccer teams met for the first time in a couple of years this week as the Teays Valley Christian School Lions took on Calvary Baptist’s Patriots at Calvary.

TVCS showed their intentions early on with several long passes down both wings, and it was only three minutes into the game when a perfectly weighted diagonal ball from Sydney Schleisser found Misha Saidi on the right. There was a scramble for the ball as the Calvary defense tried to clear the attack and Micah Daniels in the Patriots goal inadvertently picked up a back pass from his own player to give away an indirect free kick in the penalty area.

The kick was taken for the Lions by Micah Gillespie, who made no mistake in putting the ball in the net for 1-0 to TVCS.

For the next 10 minutes, most of the pressure came from the Lions, who were winning the midfield battle and sending long balls over the top of the Patriots’ back line. Calvary did stage several counter attacks,

and in the eighth minute Caleb Parra fired a shot goalward, only to see the ball palmed away to the left by Steven Stuart in the TVCS goal.

Three minutes later, a Calvary attack was halted and Cole Young cleared a long ball out of defense toward Misha Saidi on the halfway line. Saidi avoided a tackle and ran for the Patriot’s goal, shooting low from the edge of the penalty area. The Calvary keeper got down well and palmed the ball away, but Saidi had followed through and hit the rebound into the back of the net to make the score 2-0.

Six minutes later he repeated his exploit, this time running up the right wing, moving into the centre and firing a low shot into the right corner of the net to bring the score to 3-0 to TVCS.

Saidi, fed by passes from Schliesser, Young and Gillespie, was dominating play on the right side and in the 24th minute he brought down a Micah Gillespie pass and fired the ball in to get his third goal in just 13 minutes.

The score was 4-0, but Calvary continued to press when they could and Dominic Bellamy had two shots in as many minutes saved by the Lions keeper. Then, halfway through the half, Gillespie intercepted a Patriots’ pass, swerved around two defenders and shot from the left side of the area into the center of the goal to make the score 5-0.

The Lions continued to attack with Saidi, Gillespie and Sydney Schliesser pressing hard and forcing the Patriots’ keeper to make some excellent saves then, on the half hour, Calvary took a quick throw in on their left. The ball bounced around the TVCS penalty area before hitting a Lions player and rebounding into the net for an own goal that made the score TVCS 5, Calvary 1 at the half.

The second period started much as the first one had finished with TVCS attacking and Calvary relying on counter attacks. Ben Scarboro for the Patriots had several attempts on the Lions goal that were foiled by Steven Stuart but the slick, fast TVCS passing proved too much for the home team and 15 minutes into the half, Cole Young, who had been an excellent ball winner in midfield, rode a couple of tackles and fired a shot into the center of the goal from the center of the area to make the Lions’ tally 6, a score that was increased only two minutes later when Triston Yoak hit an unstoppable shot from about 25 yards.

Keebler Mata’s speed and ball winning had proved to be a problem for the left side of the Calvary defense during the second half and his excellent display was capped by scoring the Lions’ eighth goal with a low shot from the left side of the goal area into the right side of the net.

TVCS’ best game of the season ended at 9 goals to 1 when, just four minutes from the end, Grant Goad hit the ball low and hard to score the best goal of the game following a perfect cross from Misha Saidi off a throw in near the half way line.

Calvary have not fielded a varsity soccer team for the past couple of seasons and this year their players are all new, but they worked well together, showed plenty of promise and had some excellent touches. Given time, they will be a team to contend with.

TVCS have shown plenty of potential in previous games without actually achieving the results their efforts deserved. This time their passing was fast and accurate, the defense was solid, the midfield contested every ball, the attack deadly and they played for each other. The result was a great team effort capped with a good result.

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