Chazy Holds Off Strong Lisbon Effort 1-0
BY DAVE SHEA
BEEKMANTOWN - Section 7 Champion Chazy earned its 20th appearance in the New York State Class D Boys Soccer Final Four with a 1-0 win on Saturday over Section 10 Champion Lisbon which entered the game at 19-0.
Chazy is known for high-powered offensive teams with the ability to control the action. But Saturday's meeting of the number one ranked Eagles (19-0-1) and the number three Lisbon showed another side of the Eagles' program, the ability to win in a classic defensive mode.
A defensive mode which turned back an outstanding second half by the Golden Knights trying to answer the only goal of the game which was scored by Riley Hansen with 15:58 remaining in the first half. With the wind at his back Heath Lucas delivered a direct kick from 44 yards out which Hansen headed into the net for his 28th goal of the season.
Hansen also rattled a shot off the crossbar in the first half accounting for Chazy's best chances of the game.
The opposing defenses matched outstanding performances and the goal stood.
"Both defenses played extremely today, As the game went one neither one broke down and gave up an open shot. As a team we played an outstanding game. I couldn't be prouder of this group of kids. All we wanted was to leave it all on the field and we did that against the number 1 team in the state," said Lisbon Coach Dicky Marcellus.
"Our guys came away feeling that they outplayed Chazy and they are ready to make it back here next year and win. We plan to do indoor stuff on Sundays and the guys will be playing summer soccer. We plan to stay hungry and stay humble."
Lisbon enjoyed sustained pressure at different points of the second half but were denied by the Eagles' rear guard which stayed organized according to their Coach Ron McAuliffe in post game comments to "The Sun" community newspaper.
"I thought we defended so well today. That is a good Lisbon team that outplayed us in parts," he said after the game where Chazy finished with a 5-4 edge in shots on goal.
"As much as they played the ball in our half of the field. We did not give them many good looks."
In the second half strong runs by Miles Gendebien created a series of threats for the Knights and Alex Vessell provided a touch to Tyler Gravlin for a shot in a scramble which went right of the goal.
Lisbon's final chance came with 1:56 to play when the team's lone senior Karter Jordan drilled a 20-yard shot over the goal.
"Karter will be missed. He had a great game today and a unbelievable career. It has been my privilege to coach him for the last three years," said Marcellus.
"We had a tremendous season. We never allowed more than one goal in a game and today we defended very well. Chazy scored score three or four goals a game in the regular season had some high scoring games in their playoffs".
"This is a great group of young men. Thanks to all the parents and community for all the support all year. It was an amazing run. Thanks to all the LCS alumni that reached out or made the trip to watch today. All the well wishes and memories were great motivation. And I want to thank my assistant coaches for all their hard work. Kelley (Geary) and John (McBath) we wouldn't have been there without you" added Marcellus.
Hayden McBath, who tied the single season school record for shutouts, stopped four shots on the day and Gabe Hurcho of Chazy also finished with four saves in the shutout. Seeking its third straight state title Chazy will face the Mount Academy in the state semi-finals.