By Richard Fairman
The Meade County High School Greenwave Soccer team finished out their season in the Region 3 Tournament that was played at Muhlenberg County High School on Oct 19. Meade’s first opponent in the tournament was against the Apollo Eagles. From the very start of the game Apollo went straight on the attack, moving the ball through Meade’s defense, which allowed them to get close to the box, but unable to get any shots on Meade’s senior Goalkeeper Kyler Chapman, and when they did Chapman was right there to defend against it. Apollo’s relentless attack paid off with just under 10 minutes clicked off the clock, when they finally got a ball passed Chapman to take a 1-0 lead.
For the remainder of the half, Meade continued to be on their heels fighting off Apollo’s attacks. Each time Meade would gain control of the ball, and begin to bring it up field, an Apollo player would swoop in and take it away. Meade was unable to even get one shot off on the Eagles goalkeeper during the first half. Apollo would go up 2-0 on a break away that allowed an Eagle to get behind Meade’s defense to go one on one with Chapman.
With the slick turf due to the rain that was falling, Chapman lost his footing allowing the Apollo player to drop the ball in the net with only 18 seconds left in the half.
In the second half, Meade attempted to pick up their attack, but each time they got close to getting the ball inside the box to put pressure on the Apollo goalkeeper, their defense would clear it.
Meade would try and reset to start all over again, but the speed of the Apollo players began taking its toll on Meade, but the players fought hard to clear the ball out of their zone to keep Apollo from entering into scoring range. Apollo would go up by three 10 minutes into the second half on a crossing pass that caught Meade’s defense out of position, which allowed for the scoring opportunity, and ultimately their third goal of the game.
Meade never gave up trying to get the ball down to their strikers inside the box, this hard play would eventually pay off for Meade as they were able to get a shot onto the Apollo Keeper. That shot deflected back to sophomore Brycen Schmidt who got a foot on it to give Meade their first goal of the game. That goal would come late in the game, which made it difficult for Meade to put together another attack.
Meade would again be put out of the tournament in the first round, thus ending their season.
After the game Coach Matt Pollock talked to his team telling them that it had been a rough season for all, but they had some players out there that did a great job. He had Brayden Brewer chasing their leading scorer around the field, which kept him from touching the ball that much. He had Brycen Schmidt, who is normally up-front attacking, falling back to help on defense, and his younger players that he rotated in gave the team the spark they needed at times.
“I thought we played much better in the second half, we were playing more together and harder. It’s just when you get down in a hole like we did, it’s hard to dig yourself out.” Head Coach Matt Pollock said to the team afterwards, “Everyone was out there helping each other in the second half, and that helped us get at least a goal against these guys. In the last 10 minutes you could see we were getting fatigued, and we just ran out of gas honestly. This team gave their all, not just during the games, but even during practices. They worked on their own and sometimes when I would show up for practice, they were already there, and that is what I like to see. I’m enormously proud of the way they played this season, even with the way things turned out for us.”