Toppers Down Lancers In Shoal Creek Shootout

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The Hillsboro boys soccer team shackled the Lincolnwood offense and made the most of their opportunities as they defeated the Lancers 3-0 in the second annual Shoal Creek Shootout on Monday, Sept. 23, at the Hillsboro Sports Complex.

The Toppers controlled possession for much of the game, but Lincolnwood kept the home team off the board for the majority of the first half.

With ten minutes left in the opening period, Hillsboro would finally break through as Joe Mattson won a loose ball near the top of the box and found Ethan Lentz to the right of the goal. Lentz would take it from there, beating the charging Lincolnwood keeper, Austin Gwinn, to make it 1-0.

The one goal margin would stand the rest of the first half and much of the second, with Hillsboro still holding the offensive advantage. Time after time the Toppers went on runs, including one by Josh Bauman at the midway point of the half, only to see their shots just miss or go directly into Gwinn's hands.

Lincolnwood would have their best chance with 12:45 left in the game, when leading scorer Evan Hopper drove down the right side and tried to put a shot at an impossible angle on net. Hopper's shot would cut close across the front of the goal, but the Hillsboro defense was able to clear it out of harm's way to stop the rally.

Shortly after Hopper's shot, Hillsboro added to their lead as Mattson and Lentz hooked up again to make it 2-0. This time, Mattson dribbled down the left side and passed to Lentz in front as the sophomore slotted home goal number two on the game.

Seven minutes later, Bauman made it 3-0 on a free kick just outside the box that the senior curled into the side netting, just inside the far post. Gavin Matoush would draw the foul that resulted in the free kick after he was bumped off the ball on a breakaway with 3:30 to play.

With the three goal advantage, Hillsboro locked down on defense, with Matt Page earning the shutout for the Toppers' tenth win of the season.

The victory was Hillsboro's second over the Lancers in the rivalry series. It also gave them an 8-7 edge in the series since 2011, with three games also ending in a tie.

Both teams face tough tests in their next games as both welcome the undefeated Hawknadoes of the Riverton/Tri-City co-op program to town. Lincolnwood will host the visitors from Sangamon County on Friday at 5:30 p.m., while the Toppers will see the 12-0-1 Hawknadoes on Saturday at 10 a.m.

September 23 at Hillsboro

Lincolnwood 0 0 - 0

Hillsboro 1 2 - 3

Scoring: Hillsboro - Ethan Lentz (Joe Mattson), Ethan Lentz (Joe Mattson), Josh Bauman (free kick). Goalkeepers: Hillsboro - Matt Page; Lincolnwood - Austin Gwinn.

Records: Hillsboro (10-1-2); Lincolnwood (5-7-2).

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