In soccer pushing the ball up can result in a volume of shots, thus creating the psychological challenge for the opponent’s defense to remain equal to the task.
That was York’s strategy Thursday in a 2-1 West Suburban Conference crossover victory over Addison Trail. The Dukes outshot Addison Trail 13-2 in the first half, with 10 of those shots on goal.
They finally broke through in the 47th minute on a goal by senior midfielder R.J. Meade, who drove down the right side and beat two defenders before burying the ball in the middle of the net. That was followed nearly 10 minutes later by another tally from senior John Gratzianna, also from the right side.
“It was just a little more composure, not necessarily taking that very first shot, but the first chance that is available, take a look and see if something else opens up, and that’s what happened on the first goal,” said York coach Lukasz Majewski, whose team improved to 9-5 overall. “The ball was on top of the box, but it was laid off to the guy on the side and he was walking in.”
In all, the Dukes outshot the Blazers 25-6, with 20 of those shots on goal. Think that put York on cruise control in the second half?
Wrong. York had to hold on for dear life late when the Blazers got a goal from senior midfielder Ulisses Sanchez in the 78th minute. They nearly got the equalizer from junior midfielder Melvin Mora a minute later, but the Dukes back line managed to clear the ball away.
“We went young at the end there,” said Addison Trail coach Ryan Dini, whose squad fell to 3-8-3. “We just got going a little too late. They are a good team. They have a lot of talent and a lot of wins this year. We’re in the process of playing these good teams and getting over the hump.”
York had plenty of opportunities to score in the first half, but were stymied time and time again by Addison Trail junior goalkeeper Sam Sandoval, who finished with 9…