Hot goalkeeper cools No. 1 River Hill, 2-1 Hebron deals Hawks first boys soccer loss

October 17, 1998|By Rick Belz | Rick Belz,SUN STAFF

Mount Hebron has never won a Howard County soccer championship. But this may be the Vikings' season, thanks to sophomore goalkeeper Greg Peters.

His remarkable diving save on a second-half shot by Adom Crew, River Hill's premier player, stopped a Hawks rally and gave fourth-ranked Mount Hebron a spark that helped defeat the previously unbeaten, No. 1-ranked Hawks in Clarksville yesterday, 2-1.

The loss ended River Hill's 19-game winning streak, dating to the middle of last season.

Mount Hebron's victory was its 10th straight following a season-opening loss to third-ranked McDonogh, although River Hill broke the Vikings' unscored-on string at seven games. The Vikings lead Howard County with a 6-0 league record.

River Hill (10-1, 5-1) defeated Mount Hebron twice by a goal last season, including a 4-3 Class 2A regional championship victory. So yesterday's win was especially sweet for the Vikings.

"It's nice to finally win one of these big games," said Mount Hebron coach Scott Conroy, whose teams finished second in Howard County in 1995 and 1996. "Peters stepped up like we expected him to, and Brendan Glancey had a nice one-on-one battle with Crew, who is an awesome player."

Glancey said: "I knew if I played a bad game that Crew would score, so I had butterflies all day yesterday and today."

Mount Hebron's Kyle Chacon also played well as a marking back, although he drew a yellow card for tripping Crew 30 yards from goal in the 68th minute to prevent a breakaway.

Mount Hebron struck early -- in the fifth minute -- on Jung Chun's goal off a corner kick by David Lechtrecker and led 1-0 at halftime.

Even before that goal, fired-up Hebron had two near-misses, one a shot by Chun that hit a post.

River Hill came out like a different team in the second half.

The Hawks needed just two minutes to tie the game on Aaron Pierce's post-hugging volley -- a put-back of a shot by Justin Gotis that richocheted off the crossbar. The goal was the first off Peters this season.

A few minutes later, Crew blasted a volley from 15 yards in the middle of the field that Peters went airborne for. Stretching left like Superman, Peters snagged the on-target shot in midair.

It was the game's pivotal moment.

"It was a great one-touch shot by Crew, and I was just glad I was concentrating," Peters said. "River Hill is the best team we've played all year."

With River Hill's momentum momentarily stymied by Peters, the Vikings turned the game around permanently in the 54th minute.

Sophomore midfielder Matt White shed two defenders down the left flank and volleyed a left-footed cross to the front of River Hill's goal. Sophomore Jeff Wunk, who had shed his defender, easily tapped it in from 3 yards for the game-winner.

"All the credit goes to White," Wunk said.

The Peters show wasn't over.

He produced two more sensational saves in the 59th minute. His ground-hugging dive, again to his left, deflected one shot, and as he scrambled to his feet, a follow-up by Scott Buescher bounced off him and over the bar.

"Their goalkeeper was absolutely amazing," said River Hill coach Bill Stara, once a pro goalkeeper himself. "He made at least three goal-saving stops and was the difference in the match.

"We gave up two soft goals on bad defensive mistakes," Stara continued. "Mount Hebron was more aggressive to balls in the first half, and we couldn't get a flow. We were off by a stride."

Hebron's Conroy said: "We've still got three more games to win for the county championship, and then hopefully, these two teams will meet again for the regional championship."

Mount Hebron has never won a regional title, either.

Pub Date: 10/17/98

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