MURRAY – When McCracken County’s boys and Calloway County meet on the pitch, it’s almost always guaranteed a physical soccer match will follow.
In the Mustangs’ 4-1 win over the Lakers on Thursday at the Jim Nix Soccer Complex, it was no different.
“This is a tough environment to play in,” McCracken coach Michael Wieresma said. “Calloway County has created something special here. It’s never going to be an easy place to get a win.”
For the first 37 minutes, the match remained scoreless.
Riley Skinner opened the scoring in the 38th, giving McCracken a 1-0 lead, which would carry into the half.
That would be all the Mustangs needed.
“We’ve got a good chemistry,” said Skinner, one of 16 juniors expected to contribute for McCracken this year. “We’ve just got to make connecting passes and not just go direct.”
Caleb Madison padded the Mustangs’ lead in the 44th with his right-footed goal.
Jarrett Darnell made it 2-1 in the 48th, before McCracken added goals from Dylan Deweese (58th) and Jaxon Miller (71st) to put the match out of reach.
“I felt like we played too direct in the first half,” Wieresma said. “In the second half, we put the ball down, we played the ball more to feet, had some good passing and some good sequences.”
Still, Lakers coach Evan Pierce was pleased with his squad, which lost senior leader Deni Salas early in the first half with an apparent leg injury.
“I was happy with the first half,” Pierce said. “We had some good chances and they had some good chances. They happened to finish on a set piece right before halftime. I thought we played pretty composed. I thought we moved the ball decently well (and) our back line played solid.”
McCracken County 4, Calloway County 1
First Half: MC: Riley Skinner (38’)
Second Half: MC: Caleb Madison (44’), Dylan Deweese (58’), Jaxon Miller (71’); CC: Jarrett Darnell (48’).
MC: 10; CC: 7
MC: 6; CC: 6
MC: 1-0; CC: 0-2.