Soccer Toppers Topple Crusaders

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After a crazy week started with a cancellation on Tuesday, a 1-0 victory at Greenville on Wednesday, and a postponement on Thursday, the Hillsboro High School boys soccer team came out more than ready Saturday morning, March 27, as they traveled north to play the Springfield Lutheran Crusaders. 

With the chance to play and finally a sunny day to limit weather implications, the orange and black wasted no time making the most of their opportunity scoring just 49 seconds into the contest and six more times after that, pummeling the Crusaders and picking up the 7-0 win.

As stated above, the Toppers hopped directly on the offensive as, just seconds into the tilt, sophomore midfielder Adison Pollard worked the ball deep into the right corner and played a perfect cross ball to fellow sophomore Will Christian. 

Christian would get just under the ball and send it over the crossbar, but on the next possession, Pollard would hang onto the rock and do it himself, beating the Lutheran keeper to the low left side giving Hillsboro the 1-0 inside the one minute mark of the first. 

Pollard would keep up the effort, nearly picking up an assist as he once again played the ball in front, this time to senior sweeper Frankie Passariello. Passariello would be right on the doorstep and headed the ball on net but he too would push it up and over and out of play, ending the drive.

The Toppers would keep up the attack with junior midfielder Ethan Lentz answering a near miss at the Crusader end with a goal of his own to put Hillsboro up 2-0 before the eight minute mark of the half and fellow junior Gavin Matoush, seeing his first action of the season, would nearly make it 3-0 a minute later, but his shot on would hit off the outside of the net and out of play.

Lutheran keeper Jared Andrews would stand on his head in the middle minutes of the half first with a diving save against Lentz, then following it up with a steady effort to turn away a shot by junior defender Matt Page.

But try as he might, he couldn’t get to everything and the Toppers would add to their lead with 10:54 left in the half as Lentz took the corner kick deep in the Crusader end and bent a perfect ball in front to the awaiting Christian, who headed the pass right into the net putting Hillsboro up 3-0. 

Christian would add another late in the half as junior Devin Speiser rocked his shot off the crossbar and Christian was there for the putback and the 4-0 lead.

When play resumed in the second, the Toppers went right to the whip as freshman Logan Murray used a great effort to break loose up the left side and centered a pass over to Lentz. 

From there Lentz would literally find his way through three Lutheran defenders all by himself before ending up all alone in front and tapping the shot past Andrews for his second of the game. 

Page would add a score for his second goal of the season at the nine minute mark of the half putting Hillsboro up 6-0 and Lentz would finish off the hat trick minutes later giving the Toppers the staunch 7-0 and cutting the remaining time in half per IHSA rule. 

From there, the Hillsboro defense and senior goal keeper Shaw Riggs would coast to the victory. 

With win, the Toppers improve to 5-2-1 on the year and find themselves with another full slate this week as the orange and black head to Roxana Tuesday afternoon, March 30, Lincolnwood Wednesday afternoon, March 31, and then hosting the Staunton Bulldogs Thursday, April 1, on the Toppers’ annual senior night.

March 24 at Greenville

Hillsboro 1, Greenville 0

March 27 at Hillsboro

Lutheran 0 0 - 0

Hillsboro 4 3 - 7

Hillsboro Scoring: Ethan Lentz 3, Will Christian 2, Adison Pollard 1, Matt Page 1. Hillsboro Goalkeeper: Shaw Riggs.

Record: Hillsboro (5-2-1).

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