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Huskies’ play state-ranked Rams tough, fall 4-0

By Kenny Varner
LEWISTOWN – With a State ranked Central Dauphin coming to town, the Mifflin County boys’ soccer team knew that they would have to have top notched defensive effort for all 80 minutes to stay with the Rams.
For much of that 80 minutes the Huskies shut down the middle that forced Central Dauphin to have its offense going full tilt.
The Rams found the cracks in the Mifflin County armor when they needed it, winning 4-0 in a Mid-Penn Commonwealth showdown Thursday night at the Mifflin County high school soccer complex.
Leading the way for Central Dauphin was Brady Zeiders who landed a hat trick en route to the victory.
Offensively, two-thirds of the Huskies shots came from the foot of Sergey Frolov.
“We had a game plan to be defensive and they bought in and stayed with it,” Mifflin County coach Robert Lepley said. “We’re still young and we are looking at each game as a learning experience. What can we figure out? What can we get better at? What can we improve upon.”
After a brief possession to open the game, Mifflin County went back into its defensive positions as the Rams quickly brought up the ball and across the midfield line.
The up-tempo style of Central Dauphin provided a lot of shots at the Huskies’ goal but for the first seven minutes Mifflin County and goalie Jonathon Suydam kept the Rams at bay.
However, with 33:05 showing on the clock, August Axtman snuck one through, taking the 1-0 advantage.
The fast moving offense proved also to be a strong defensive facet as the Rams flocked to the ball immediately after the Huskies cleared the ball downfield after keeping CD off the scoreboard.
Mifflin County did a good job getting to the ball and failed to allow the Rams an easy look at the goal.
Suydam made catch after catch trying to keep his team in the ball game even diving for one when CD’s Dax Hoffman shot a cross kick that was heading for the corner of the goal.
As the time ticked off the first half, it looked as if the Huskies were going to hold the Rand to a lone goal.
But Central Dauphin didn’t get to be ranked 8th in Pennsylvania for nothing as they posted a goal with just over four minutes.
In the midst of a crowded goal area Nicholas Gigliotti found Zeiders heading toward the goal. His kick went right to Zeiders’ head literally as he headed in the Rams second goal of the game.
Before the period ended, Central Dauphin went up 3-0 when Zeiders side kicked the ball into the side.
“Central Dauphin is a great team. They are one of the top teams in the state. They will probably go pretty deep into the post season and probably be in the hunt in the Commonwealth. You to put that into perspective as well,” Lepley said. “These kids are 15 and 16 years old and they were playing a group of seniors. They (Mifflin County) aren’t going to feel sorry for themselves. We are not going to feel sorry for them. We are going to recognize that we could always get better and they are doing that.”
In the second half, the Mifflin County defensive did even better, allowing just a lone goal by Zeiders at the 17-minute mark of the period, ending the  score at 4-0. Suydam tallied 15 saves on the night. Mifflin County was outshot 27-3 while CD held the advantage in corner opportunities by a 10-0 advantage.
Mifflin County will be back in action Saturday when they head up north to play State College.

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