Tiger soccer team clips Zion Christian

Friday, March 15, 2013
Marshall County's Luis Zarate battles Zion Christian's Campbell Bybee for possession of the ball in the first half. Photos by Louis G. Scheuchenzuber

Neither rain, nor wind, nor the cold of night could keep the Marshall County Tigers soccer team from getting the job done on the pitch, as they went on the road and defeated the Zion Christian Academy Eagles 2-1 in their season opener on Monday evening.

Despite controlling the action for most of the contest and outshooting the Eagles 25-7 overall, the Tigers were locked in a 1-1 with Zion Christian at halftime. Marshall County then took a 2-1 lead early in the second half on a goal by junior striker Edwin Jaimes before thwarting a handful of scoring attempts by the Eagles over the final 30 minutes to take home the victory.

Strategy dampened

Although Zion Christian's field held up remarkably well after receiving almost an inch of rain earlier in the day, MCHS coach Lisa Raffo thought the soggy conditions affected her teams' ability to finish on scoring chances.

"I was happy with how we played overall. We did a good job in transition, but we didn't convert on enough of our opportunities. We had a hard time in the last third of the field tonight," said Raffo. "When you're a passing team like us, field conditions are important. Zion Christian has a great field, but it makes it harder to pass the ball when it's soggy like this."

With MCHS losing single season scoring leader and All-State performer Andres Acosta to graduation, Edwin Jaimes helped pick up some of the offensive slack for the Tigers on Monday and scored both Marshall County goals. Marvin Jaimes and Ivan Leyva each registered an assist for MCHS as well.

Jaimes returns

"Edwin did well. He played his position and showed some maturity. He missed most of last season because of injury so it was nice to see him get off to a good start this year," said Raffo.

Marshall County's Victor Palma tries to dribble around Zion Christian's Taylor Freels in the first half.

Leyva and Luis Zarate both attempted a team high six shots, while Edwin Jaimes and Victor Palma took five and three shots respectively. Marvin Jaimes also fired two shots, and Luis Consuelo, David Martinez, and Ben Jordan each registered one shot.

Evan Haislip started the game at goaltender and recorded three saves in the first half. Consuelo then replaced Haislip in net at the start of the second half and finished with two saves.

Campbell Bybee tallied the Eagles lone goal of the night, while goaltender Joe Bauer notched 10 saves.

Scoring starts

Bauer made several nice saves to keep Marshall County off the board early on, but MCHS finally broke through in the 25th minute when Edwin Jaimes rifled a 10-yard shot into the left side of the net after receiving a pass from Marvin Jaimes in the middle of the field.

The Tigers then let their guard down in the waning moments of the first half, as the Eagles scored a goal in the 38th minute to knot the game at 1-1. Zion Christians' Grant Johnson made a run down the left side of the field before firing a low, skidding shot towards the far post. Haislip managed to deflect the ball, but Bybee ran up and kicked in the rebound.

Marshall County quickly regained the lead at the start of the second half when Edwin Jaimes redirected a crossing pass from Leyva into the back of the net to give MCHS a 2-1 lead in the 45th minute.

After both teams failed to cash in on scoring opportunities over the next 30 minutes, the Eagles had one final chance to tie the game in the 78th minute, but Consuelo caught a low, line drive shot by Jud Smith to preserve the win for the Tigers.