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Cyclones continue hot streak with win over Cherokee

BY ALLEN LAMOUNTAIN

STAR CORRESPONDENT

Coaches often say that good offense is the product of strong defense and on Thursday evening the Elizabethton boys soccer squad proved that theory true.

For the second consecutive match, the Cyclones scored nine goals and held the opponent to a precious few shots on goal in a 9-1 victory over Cherokee.

EHS (3-2, 1-0 conference) had 20 shots on goal, putting nine past Chiefs goalkeepers James Bond and Nick Sumpter with sophomore Sean Smithdeal scoring a three-goal hat trick in the process.

“I was helped by some fantastic crossing passes that were just put right there in the box where I took a first touch and scored after that,” Smithdeal said. “I would just like to give thanks to my teammates for that, they did a great job.”

The only smudge on the Cyclones score sheet was an own goal off a shot by Sumpter that was inadvertently knocked into the net by freshman Luke Whaley as he attempted to defend the shot.

The first half of the match was played by a mostly freshman starting lineup that was able to get three goals past Bond starting with Nathan Hurley who got on the board in the 13th minute. Just two minutes later junior Dawson O’Quinn made it a 2-nil match and in the 34th minute Noah Lambert scored from a forward position.

“We looked very good in the first half,” Cyclones head coach Bill McClay said. “They had some very nice goals and had a lot of one-touch passes, one-touch in, one-touch cross, and one-touch finish.

“They showed how easy this game is gentlemen and unfortunately the one goal we gave up in the second half was the own goal. That came from facing our own goal when defending. That happens on all levels and is just part of the game.”

In the second half the Cyclones poured it on with goals coming from junior Skylar Jenkins in the 43rd minute, and the own goal coming in the 47th minute of play.

EHS then steadied the ship and got back on the attack with freshman Riley Vernon scoring in the 55th minute and Jenkins getting his second tally of the match just three minutes later for a 6-1 advantage.

The rest of the scoring came from Smithdeal as he scored on assisted goals in the 68th, 70th, and 75th minutes of the match. Assists came from Howard, Clay Hopland, and Vernon.

EHS 9-1

Cherokee 0 1 – 1

Elizabethton 3 6 – 9

Scoring summary

First Half

E – Hurley (unassisted) 13:00

E – O’Quinn (unassisted) 15:00

E – Lambert (unassisted) 34:00

Second Half

E – Jenkins (assist Hopland) 43:00

C – Sumpter (own goal) 47:00

E – Vernon (unassisted) 55:00

E – Jenkins (unassisted) 58:00

E – Smithdeal (assist Howard) 68:00

E – Smithdeal (assist Hopland) 70:00

E – Smithdeal (assist Vernon) 75:00