Carper rescues Mount Hebron in regional final

Senior goalie has 17 saves to hold Fallston at bay until Schmauder's goal in 2nd OT

Mount Hebron 2 Fallston 1

Boys Soccer

November 08, 2006|By Glenn Graham | Glenn Graham,Sun Reporter

In a game where the offense lacked its typical energy and the midfield continually gave up ground, the Mount Hebron boys soccer team looked to the other side of the field to save its season.

Senior goalie Brad Carper made 17 saves - most of them standard, a few spectacular - to give junior midfielder Matt Schmauder the chance to provide the game-winning goal midway through the second overtime as the No. 3 Vikings got past visiting and No. 4 Fallston, 2-1, to win the Class 3A East region championship.

The Vikings (14-0-3) will next face defending state champ Towson in the state semifinal set for Friday (time to be announced) at North Point High School in Charles County. Fallston - with a stellar class of 14 seniors - ends its season with a 15-2-1 mark.

A diving save from Carper that came 10 minutes in off a blistering shot from Fallston senior midfielder Tim Gill set the tone.

The Vikings took a 1-0 lead on a goal from Justin Martinelli in the 21st minute, but instead of continuing to apply pressure like in previous games, it was the Cougars who took control.

After 14 saves from Carper, Gill finally broke through on a rebound chance in front with 12:32 left in regulation to send the game into overtime.

Midway through the second overtime, Schmauder was left unmarked at the far post to tap home a long cross from Garrett Nickles to send Mount Hebron on to the state semifinals. A sprint to the other end to greet Carper came first.

"It's a team effort," Carper said. "I'm always ready for whatever comes my way. Fallston put on a great attack - I just try to do my best and show what I'm made of. I think I did that and my team - we're just scrappy like that, we're tough."

Mount Hebron coach Mike Linsenmeyer was quick to point out that the Cougars played a smarter game with more heart and his Vikings were fortunate to win.

"We need to raise the energy level or else we're going to lose to Towson," he said. "I think it's a great wake-up call - the kind you need."

The Cougars' fine season ended earlier than they would have liked, but coach Chris Hoover couldn't have asked for anything more.

"It was 95 minutes of selling out for your teammates and doing everything you possibly could. We just came up a little short in the end," he said.

"The hardest part quite honestly will be tomorrow at practice time and not be able to be with them because they're just a great group of guys."

glenn.graham@baltsun.com

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