Panthers Edge CM for 1-0 Win
10/12/2017 8:24 AM

PREP SOCCER: Jersey edges CM 1-0, teams square off again Saturday in regional

Jersey downs CM again, play Saturday in regional

By Pete Hayes -

Jersey’s Wyatt Freand, right, looks to gain possession of the ball while being defended by Civic Memorial’s Seth Terry in Wednesday night’s match at the Bethalto Sports Complex.

Billy Hurst | For The Telegraph

BETHALTO — Wednesday night’s 1-0 Jersey prep soccer victory over Civic Memorial continued a trend started a couple weeks ago. It was the Panthers’ second win over the Eagles in 13 days.

But the margin of victory is getting smaller.

Jersey’s Wyatt Freand scored early in the second half and lifted the Panthers to a 1-0 victory over CM Wednesday night at the Bethalto Sports Complex. On Sept. 29, Jersey pounded CM 6-0 in Jerseyville.

“They were much better than just a couples weeks ago,” Jersey coach Scott Burney said. “It was their senior night and they were pumped. They came out hard and they played well.”

Wednesday’s game was the second of three between the teams this season. The third will have more far-reaching implications. The Panthers and Eagles will square off at 11 a.m. Saturday in Jerseyville in a play-in game of the Bethalto Class 2A Regional Tournament. The winner of that game will move on to face second-seeded Waterloo Gibault in a semifinal Oct. 17.

“I’m OK with it,” Burney said of facing the Eagles twice in four days time. “We both know each other pretty well anyway, and playing this close together gives us a chance to work on what we need to work on and then play again.”

CM coach Derek Jarman agreed.

“We’ve played them twice in the last two weeks and we play again Saturday,” Jarman said. “We know they’ll make adjustments and we will change a few things up. We hope to be a little more healthy and so do they.

“But at this point, it’s not like we are playing a North Dakota team. We know each other and respect each other. They want to knock us out and we want to survive and make sure we get another home game or two on our own home field next week.”

The Panthers close the regular season 12-9 overall and 2-8 in the Mississippi Valley Conference. CM finished the regular season 8-17 and 0-10.

“I’m proud of how the seniors helped turn this program around,” CM coach Derek Jarman said. “We had to rebuild from the ground up and it stars with them.

“We couldn’t be more happy with the way they focus on the journey and the daily work ethic.”

Each team had 15 shots. But Freand’s found its way to the back of the net in the 52 minute, early in the second half. He also had a chance to secure an insurance goal with a penalty kick with five minutes remaining in the game, but missed the attempt.

After a 50-50 ball coming out of the Eagles’ end, David Rogers headed a clearing attempt toward the penalty area, where Freand cut the ball inside and placed the ball inside the far post.

“I thought both teams played well and moved the ball,” Jarman said. “Jersey is one of the best-coached teams we see every year. Thye’re tough and physical and play a clean game. Credit to them – they capitalized on a breakdown in the back and knew where to put the ball.

CM created scoring chances of its own, one of the best of which was a 25-yard blast from Kameron Denney that hit a goal post with 15 minutes remaining.

“We played pretty well,” Burney said, “but it was also typical of how things have gone for us most of the time this season. we always seem to make one or two critical mistakes. This time, they didn’t hurt us.”

Jarman had praise for his team’s performance, especially the senior Eagles.

“I’m very proud of our guys, specially our seniors,” Jarman said. “Jayden Heeren and Parker Calvin played very well in the back.

“And I can’t say enough about Kameron Denney. He’s got the heart of a lion and left everything he had on the field. He’s our leader and the kids fed off of him tonight.

“We started 10 seniors for our senior night and the kids were ready to play. I’ve watched them grow as soccer players and even better human beings and I’m very proud of them.

“Of course you’d love to have the scoreboard say the home team had at least one more than the visitors on senior night, but the effort was immeasurable. You can live with the results when you have kids laying it on the line like that.”

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