Gilman, IL’s #15 ranked team nationally and riding a four game winning streak, was ready. Over twenty or so years of competition, the Greyhounds knew that the game against visiting Bears would tough. And it was– with Landon taking a hard fought 10-8 victory over one of the MIAA elite programs.
The brown clad Bears arrived at Roland Park with energy and initiative– Sean O’Brien making a quick turnaround bounce shot @ 10:41. Not long thereafter, Colton Rupp made a great pass to a cutting Nate Buller for a goal @ 9:20. The ‘Hounds responded with a nice goal at 6:45. Landon tacked on another goal on another Sean question mark move and shot @ 4:33.
The home team showed their metal with goals at 3:49 and then at 1:11. It should be expected that the home team should be able to score—their offense includes big time recruits going to UNC, Notre Dame and Colgate.
The Bears’ D was resolute; Hunter Sells made many exceptional saves (9 in total) and had some help from his friends who carry long poles (Tom Evans, Landon McKenzie, Paul Padalino, Brandon Johnson, Drew Firstenberg) and all of the middies who played both ways. If one sits within 40 yards of the coaching box, you know that the Landon coaches spend much (all?) of their spare time at opponents’ games; for the moment a player from the other side touches the ball, his tendencies (all right, will come back, shooter) are communicated by Penn Leachman, Paul Padalino, Will McGettigan or Michael Cooke). Frankly the kids on the other teams must feel a bit naked as their tendencies/weaknessesare revealed.
END OF 1ST QUARTER BEARS 3 ‘HOUNDS 3
The next period was as tough in terms of hard work, but not as productive in numbers of goals. Landon added to its scoreboard with two goals, both by Sean, getting an advantage through an unmarked substitution and then coming from behind goal, @ 9:16 and 5:51
HALFTIME BEARS 5 ‘HOUNDS 3
Back and forth was the theme of the next period. Gilman tied it up with goals at 8:48 and 6:17. The Bears took the lead again with a nice look from Sam Lynch to Ryan Pride who caught the pass and buried it with a quick stick @ 4:57. The resolveof the ‘Hounds did not dissolve and the home team evened up the score at 0:59.0
END OF 3RD QUARTER BEARS 6 ‘HOUNDS 6
The brothers Buller communicate oh so well on the field; as Zac possessed the ball, Nate the younger made a nice cut betwixt the elder and the goal. The superb pass from Zac set up Nate for a sweet goal @ 11:24.
Surprise! The home team replied with an assisted goal at 10:12. 7-7
Control of the ball is incredibly important in a close game like this and every faceoff in the last quarter was won by the Bears (Sam Offutt 4/4 and Jarett Witzal 2/2) with help from wingmen (Jack Bolen, Riley McTague, Brandon and Drew).
After the tying goal Landon possessed the ball and worked it around to Zac who showed a nice goal line extended move which resulted in a score @8:38. Another win at X and the ball came to Ryan who found Riley McTague who buried it @ 8:05. 9-7
The ‘Hounds drew within a single goal with an unassisted goal at 6:56. The two goal margin was reestablished by Sam Lynch who inverted and came from behind to put another by the Gilman goalie @ 5:50. The remainder the game evidenced the same level of effort and competitiveness with both teams having opportunities. In one of the scrums to control the ball, ome of the ‘Hounds was called for a slash and the Bears ran the ball around for the remaining 0:37.
FINAL SCORE BEARS 10 ‘HOUNDS 8
KHARI BATEN “THAT’S A BEAR AWARD”
could have easily been shared by all of the Bears, but is awarded to
Sean O’Brien 4 goals
Hunter Sells 9 saves, 5 GBs and 1 shot
Sam Offutt 4/4 at X in the last quarter