All year long Evergreen soccer coach Dave Skoczyn has spoke of what he calls his “set pieces,” namely his special plays on corner kicks, free kicks and throw-ins.
Three of those specials resulted in goals as Evergreen shutout Swanton 5-0 to win their second straight Division III boys soccer sectional title.
The Vikes raised their record to 13-4-1 on the season.
“The way this team has been all year is that if one guy makes a mistake or whatever, someone else picks him up, move on and let’s go,” Skoczyn said after. “I said before that we moved Brady and Cory Kanneman to take those corners and try to get more guys in the middle that can score the ball and we have been getting better with that.”
Evergreen was in control of the match right away, although Swanton goalie Nick Meisner kept the Vikings off the board with three saves, all on Tyson Woodring shots in the first eight minutes.
However with 26:21 left in the first, Evergreen broke through and started a three-goal barrage in eight minutes.
Woodring converted Nick Rosinski’s spot on a give-and-go pass for Evergreen’s first score.
Then, a tick over two minutes later, the Vikings tallied on one of those specials.
Cory Kanneman’s corner found the front of the net where Elijah Hernandez headed it in to double the Evergreen lead.
Six minutes later the same duo struck again, as Kanneman and Hernandez duplicted the previous almost exactly for a 3-0 bulge.
Evergreen peppered the goal area with 18 first half shots to just one for the Bulldogs and the score could’ve been out of hand if not for the work of Meisner who had 11 saves in the first 40 minutes.
The Bulldog goalie had yet another big one, again on Woodring’s blast, that he tipped off the crossbar in the first minute of the second.
And again Hernandez got retribution a few mnutes later in the same way he scored his first two goals.
This time Kanneman’s corner kick went back side and Hernandez headed it in on the short side to make it 4-0.
“We have to have guys who are hungry to win the ball in those situations and Elijah is one of those kids,” Skoczyn said. “Honest to gosh he just goes up and wins balls. Cory put three of them right on his head, you couldn’t ask for better.”
Evergreen’s last score came with 28:18 left when Riley Dunbar’s drop feed to Woodring coming in from the right led to the junior’s second goal of the game.
The Vikings had 32 shots at the net in all with Meisner corralling a whopping 19 of those.
Swanton had three shots with Evergreen netminder Walker Lumbrezer getting one save.
“For us it’s the little things,” Skoczyn said when asked about the back-to-back sectional wins. “It’s great for the kids it’s great for the fans and parents, getting pictures and all that but as a coach we just want to keep progressing, keep getting better and doing it as a team. It was a team effort here today. We moved the ball pretty well. We worked the ball better to the outside than the first time we played Swanton. We did things to control Hayden (Callicotte) who is a real good player and we accomplished that, so it’s a good win but we still have more we want to accomplish.”
Evergreen plays Archbold, a team the defeated the Vikings 5-4 at Archbold during the regular season, in the first round of the Division III district Wednesday night at Ottawa Hills.