Top-ranked Centennial left No. 4 Howard seeing double last night.
With the score tied 1-1 midway through the second half, the visiting Eagles scored twice within 1 minute, 22 seconds on identical Eric Tischer-to-Rehan Gill corner kicks to give Centennial a 3-1 win in a Howard County League game.
On both scores, Tischer curved his kick over goalie James Morrow, playing the near post, to Rehan.
"Eric worked all week in practice on curving the ball far," said Rehan. "He just booted it over the keeper's head. [The Lions] were focusing on [Tod] Downen, which left me wide open."
"We spend a lot of time on set plays," said Centennial coach Bill Stara, whose team improved to 5-0, including 1-0 in the league. "I wasn't surprised that we were able to score two goals that quickly."
The goals erased any hopes for a Howard upset, and also nullified Howard's best effort of the season, according to Lions coach Rudy Storch.
"This was the best game we've played all year," said Storch, whose team fell to 4-1 overall, and 0-1 in the league. "Unfortunately, we were playing a better team, and a taller team."
Storch attributed the success of Centennial's corner kicks to its overall height. Until last night, Howard hadn't allowed a goal in its previous two games.
From the onset, the Lions kept a tight mark on Eagles top scorer Josh Baer.
In the first half, with Baer heavily guarded, the Eagles managed only three shots. It took just one, however, to give them the lead.
With 1:51 left in the first half, Baer took a pass from Downen at the top of the goalie's box, turned and shot past charging Morrow for the game's first goal.
Baer has scored six of his team's 13 goals this season.
Howard rarely got close to the goal, going through the first half without a shot on goal. But, like the Eagles, once the Lions got a shot, they made it count.
On their first shot of the game, four minutes into the second half, the Lions scored when Jarrod Moreland picked off an attempted Centennial clearing pass and drove in for the easy shot from 10 yards out to tie the game at 1.