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Not all victories are on the scoreboard

Despite 2-0 home loss to Leander, Martin pleased with team's play

Yoni+Southwick+pushes+the+ball+past+two+Leander+defenders+during+tonight%27s+2-0+varsity+loss+to+the+Lions+tonight+at+House+Park.+Photo+by+J.+R.+Cardenas.
Yoni Southwick pushes the ball past two Leander defenders during tonight's 2-0 varsity loss to the Lions tonight at House Park. Photo by J. R. Cardenas.

Yoni Southwick pushes the ball past two Leander defenders during tonight's 2-0 varsity loss to the Lions tonight at House Park. Photo by J. R. Cardenas.

Yoni Southwick pushes the ball past two Leander defenders during tonight's 2-0 varsity loss to the Lions tonight at House Park. Photo by J. R. Cardenas.

J. R. Cardenas

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Even before McCallum’s Jan. 9 game against Leander started, the varsity boys soccer team had already won.

It wasn’t a quantifiable victory but rather qualitative. Coach Martin would say after the game that the improved attitude and effort of his team was palpable.

Coach Nick Martin surveys the pitch. After the game, Martin praised his entire team for their improved effort. Photo by J. R. Cardenas.

Because the game was a non-district, the moral victory was at least as significant a the team’s 2-0 loss on the scoreboard.

The game was the perfect opportunity for both squads to get some much needed game experience and build team chemistry.

As the game progressed, both offenses found their footing by pushing the ball down the field several times before approaching the 20-minute mark of the first half.

Leander scored the first goal of the game with about 17 minutes left in the first half. The Knights continued their attack as the half came to a close, but they could not capitalize on their opportunities. Unfortunately for the home team, the visiting Lions got an unexpected goal right before halftime with about a minute left, sending the knights to halftime down 2-0.

During halftime, the boys held their spirits high even though the game temperatures were increasingly low.

The team came out swinging on offense to start the chilly second half. The Knights took shot after shot but just could not find the back of the net.

The Knights defense stiffened and held the Lions scoreless for the rest of the game, causing havoc to the Lions offence whenever a Leander player tried to move the ball up the field.

Ezekiel Sengiyunva hydrates during a break in the action. Photo by J. R. Cardenas.

Despite the outcome, Coach Martin saw plenty of positive signs that his Knights have made tremendous strides in coming together as a team that will be ready for the district challenges that lay ahead.

The Knights hope to reverse their fortunes when they face Lehman tonight at Nelson.

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Not all victories are on the scoreboard