MARQUETTE - A quick look at the stat book after Saturday's Marquette Senior High School soccer game against visiting Sault Ste. Marie revealed how the Redmen posted a 2-1 win.
The Redmen attempted 34 shots, 17 of which were on goal. The Blue Devils, more accurate but less opportunistic, put six of only eight attempts on goal.
"I thought it went great," MSHS coach Matt Tebo said. "(The Soo's) a good team and they had their chances, but we also had a lot. A whole lot. We just need to finish those."
Marquette Senior High School’s Ryan Kuzmak, left, kicks the ball down the field to a fellow player as Sault Ste. Marie’s Bret Weber tries to stop him during the second half of their match Saturday at Marquette.The Redmen won, 2-1. (Journal photo by Amanda Monthei)
Marquette Senior High School’s Lehomm Pickard, front, tries to dribble his way out of pressure by Sault Ste. Marie’s Bret Weber during the second half of their game in Marquette on Saturday. (Journal photo by Amanda Monthei)
The one goal the Redmen allowed came after a fall by goaltender Tony Lackey, who ended the game with five saves.
"The goal we gave up, the ball popped out of the (Tony's) hands when he slipped in a mud puddle," Tebo said. "So that's a tough goal to give up for him and for the team, especially when it was 0-0."
The game had remained 0-0 until nearly 34 minutes into the first half, when Sault Ste. Marie's Bret Weber put one in off of a David Coliero assist.
The Redmen got to it after halftime, first getting a penalty kick from Billy Mullett at 3:11. Their second and final goal, assisted by Marty Gray, came off the foot of Andrew Banitt.
Both Banitt and Mullett said their team's shot accuracy and ability to finish those shots lacked just a bit.
"We definitely should have put more on goal and scored a few more," Mullett said. "But we got chances and that's what we've been working on.
"You can't really ask for more than that if you're trying."
The win over the Sault put the Redmen at 4-2-3 on the season, a record Tebo attributes to some competitive - and vengeful - Upper Peninsula soccer programs.
"I'm thinking that we're doing well. But what's happening and what I knew would happen is that Marquette has been the big dog in this sport for a while," Tebo said.
"Everybody is building their program, developing and becoming very competitive, and that's what we want.
"We want tough games," he added. "We want 2-1 games, we want to work hard and play competitive teams."
Up next for MSHS is arguably one of its strongest competitors, Kingsford, where the Redmen will play at 6 p.m. Tuesday.
Sustaining the idea that competitive programs are good for his team, Tebo said both Iron Mountain and Kingsford consistently give MSHS the hardest time of anyone of its schedule.
"It's always hard to go there, Iron Mountain or Kingsford. It doesn't matter," he said.
"We play teams from downstate and Wisconsin, but that (Kingsford) field is always the toughest place that we go, no matter what.
"Kingsford is rebuilding, but they're still very competitive. Coaches and players are just doing a good job.
"The U.P. is very competitive," he added. "It's good for us and it's good for the sport."
Amanda Monthei can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org