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Lions maul Midway

Soccer team moves ahead in area playoffs beating Midway, 3-1
In Corsicana on Tuesday night, the Midway Panthers entered their area playoff match with Lion soccer sporting a gaudy 18-1-2 record.
Midway’s dominant run came to a screeching halt, however, as Ennis moved to 17-7. The Lions struck first late in the opening half and pulled into a 3-0 lead while Midway scored with two minutes remaining as Ennis emphatically qualified for its first-ever regional quarterfinal match.
“You don’t go 18-1-2 without being a good team, but I knew we could come out and play well enough to win,” said coach Alex Rendon.
Jovani Rangel now has 25 goals in 2007 as he continued to shine with Ennis’ first two goals on assists by Juan Patlan and Jesus Vasquez. Vasquez scored the other goal for E-town unassisted.
“You won’t always get a lot of chances against good teams, so you have to make your shots count,” Rangel said.
“We knew we could take [Midway], but they were good and gave us a battle.”
Ennis almost delivered a shutout and sweeper Taylor Goodwin was not in a giving mood as he shadowed Midway’s top forward and snuffed out one Panther attack after another.
“Defense is all about teamwork and we were there to back each other up all game,” Goodwin said.
“The forward I was marking was moving all over the field, but I just tried to stay right with him.”
Midway actually controlled field position throughout the first half with the wind at its back. While the Lions looked to work the ball down the sidelines, the Panthers were able to come up with steals and disrupt Ennis’ short passing game.
Midway had the game’s first quality attempt on goal in minute 23 and it nearly took the lead in minute 28 with a header off the top bar. However, someone had to land the first haymaker and it would be Ennis in minute 35 when Jovani took a Patlan pass and buried a close shot in the far corner for the 1-0 lead.
“Midway did a good job of pressuring the ball, yet we worked through it,” Rendon said.
“They had some great chances, but fortunately the bounces went our way. Even though the guys were getting a little frustrated in the first half, the fact that we struck first against the wind was huge.”
“They weren’t fast on defense, so I thought I could take them,” Rangel said.
“I put the shot low against a big keeper and he couldn’t get to it.”
Gerardo Rangel left the game with a hand injury just before Ennis went ahead and backup goalie Mojica took over only to make a diving save in minute 36.
After Midway controlled the first half other than Rangel’s goal, Ennis took over in the final 40 minutes with the wind at its back. Ivan Solis put a strong shot on goal in minute 54, but it would be Jovani to deliver once again in minute 59. He ran onto an excellent Vasquez pass at midfield and it was a footrace from there. With a defender closing in from an angle and the goalie charging out on him, Rangel smoothly drove a chest-high shot between them for the 2-0 lead.
“Jovani has nose for the goal and you don’t let him make a run in space,” Rendon said.
“Jesus put a great ball in front of him and the goal played out like it was a shootout situation.”
“I knew I had to take my time and when the goalie came up on me I put it past him,” Rangel said.
The third goal came in minute 65 when Solis banged a quality shot off two posts as Vasquez tracked it down and found the back of the net.
“Luckily I was there to recover the ball and put it under the goalie’s legs,” Vasquez said.
“At the half, Coach Rendon told us we should control the ball more with the wind. This was a total team effort.”
The game got ugly the rest of the way as frustrated Panthers drew yellow cards with classless fouls that injured Jovani Rangel and Vasquez, but both players expect to be alright. Gerardo Rangel, who had returned to start the second half, made a diving save in minute 76 before Midway got on the board in minute 78 with the game already decided.
“They poked it in past Gerardo when he came out and we got a little sloppy, but the guys were working so hard all night that I can’t fault them for it,” Rendon said.
“Blowing a 3-0 lead against Red Oak taught us a lot and that’s why we came out so strong in the second half.”
Ennis now moves into the regional quarterfinals as it faces Dallas Adamson in Lancaster on Friday at 7 p.m.

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Posted by on Mar 28 2007. Filed under Sports. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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