Hillcrest FC 9 – 9 Deportes Mexico
‘8 Luke Stanage
’15 Tim Knipp
’30 Tim Knipp
’35 Tim Knipp
’39 Luke Stanage
’44 Geoff Mumley
’49 Evan Otterholt
A dramatic battle was fought on the soccer pitch on Saturday night, as Hillcrest FC fought their way into a tie against the second place team, Deportes Mexico. A number of players were away this week, including myself, Peter Duane, and the starting keeper, Aaron Dutton. Despite these missing links, Hillcrest showed off how deep this team is with a number of players stepping into premiere roles.
With Aaron missing this week, Evan Otterholt stepped in to play goal for the first half. He did a commendable job holding Deportes to only 5 goals considering this was his first time in goal all season and he wasn’t even playing with any gloves. Hillcrest scored three times in the first half with goals coming from Luke Stanage, Tim Knipp, and newcomer, Andy.
Because of all the missing players, Hillcrest called on one of their fans, Jacob, who stepped onto the pitch in a t-shirt and jeans to serve as an extra sub. Andy, who had scored one of the goals in the first half relieved Evan in goal for the second half.
As play went on, Hillcrest found themselves in a deep hole, 4-8 after a string of goals by Deportes. But, they hadn’t thrown in the towel just yet. In the thirty-fifth minute, Levi Gamble found himself alone with the ball in the attacking half. He spotted Tim Knipp streaking into the penalty area and sent the ball on a line, right to Tim’s foot. He struck the ball home and the comeback had started. Just a few minutes later, Luke Stanage was called on to take a free kick about a third of the way into the attacking half. Stanage sized up the distance and sent the ball on a high arcing path right over the keeper’s head and into the net, bringing the score to 6-8. Deportes Mexico quickly scored another goal, which, for any other team, would have swung the momentum back in their favor. It wasn’t so against Hillcrest FC. Geoff Mumley, stand out defender, would score a goal of his own in the forty-fourth minute. Then, with just a minute and a half left in the game, Evan Otterholt scored his first of the night, bring the score to within one. In the chaos of the final minute, a Deportes forward found himself with the ball on a quick breakaway with only Andy in goal to beat. Andy quickly raced out from goal, stole the ball from the Deportes player and fired a shot towards the opposing goal. The ball richochet off the side of the goal directly back towards Andy who was still at midfield. On a volley, he took another shot and this time blasted the ball into the back of the net, tying the game just before the final whistle.
Player of the Game
The player of the game was clearly Andy, who not only was flexible enough to play keeper for an entire half, he scored the tying goal while playing keeper with just seconds to spare. From everything I heard, it was a spectacular goal and one that won’t be forgotten anytime soon.
For his sneaky chip shot goal off a free kick, Luke Stanage earns the Ninja Award. Seriously, no one saw him coming. I also heard he was trying to show off for his wife and kid who were in attendance.
Hillcrest was bolstered by the jubilant cheering of super fan, Griffin Gamble. He spent the entire game shouting and encouraging the players of Hillcrest FC. There were reports that he was louder than every other fan combined. Awesome stuff.
Hillcrest’s next game will be on Monday, February 24 at 10:00PM in a rematch against FC Dorkmund. With just three games left on the schedule, Hillcrest has a lot of work to do to make up ground in the standings.