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Mt. Hebron boys soccer rides offense past Howard, 5-2

Matt Murphy

With the rain pouring down Friday afternoon against Howard, the floodgates opened for the Mt. Hebron offense.

Jon Horrocks scored twice to spearhead a Vikings’ attack that scored a season-high five times in a three-goal victory over the Lions, 5-2.

“There’s definitely been some trouble with finishing at times this season, so it was great to see us play as a team and convert our chances,” Horrocks said. “Our possession had a lot to do with it … we put ourselves in good position to finish.”

Mt. Hebron (6-2-1) got on the board first just six minutes in when Horrocks converted an unassisted tally. Then 14 minutes later, Zach Andreas kept the momentum going by scoring off a feed from Johnny Linsenmeyer.

Rounding out the early run, Anand Pradeep finished off an assist from Alec Vaughn to make it 3-0 with 18 minutes left in the opening half.

“We’ve been practicing a lot on moving the ball and finishing on set plays and it all kind of was working out today,” Pradeep said. “A game like this is a really good feeling and it gives us some great confidence going forward. It’s nice to have something to show for all the hard work.”

For Howard (1-8), which hasn’t scored more than two goals in a game all season, the large early deficit created an especially tall hill to climb.

“We dug ourselves a hole that was going to be extremely difficult to get out of,” Howard coach Nils Schroder said. “We’ve stuck with a lot of teams this year, but at the same time, we’re not a team built to come back from three goals. I was proud of how the kids stuck with it, it was just a rough start.”

The Lions certainly didn’t just roll over. With less than two minutes left in the opening half, Scott Bruner scored a goal off an assist from Kyle Lowenkron to cut the deficit to 3-1 at the break.

But Mt. Hebron reloaded and went right back at it to open the second half. Less than a minute after intermission, Horrocks scored again — this time off feed from Pat Palin. Then, only three minutes later, it was Palin’s turn to get a goal as he finished a cross from Danny Beatty.

“We’ve played well in games earlier this season, like the game against Hammond, and the ball just hasn’t gone in the back of the net. So it was nice today that we were fortunate enough to finish a few of them,” Mt. Hebron coach Mike Linsenmeyer said. “Howard played fairly well, we just were able to finish a few nice goals.”

Howard’s Bruner kept things respectable by converting his second goal of the game with 33:55 left in regulation. His score, which came off a rebound in front, was his fourth in county play.

“He has a nose for the goal and he can finish with both his left and right foot,” Schroder said. “He’s only a junior this year, so I’m excited about the rest of this year and next year to see him keep developing.”

Neither team managed any goals over the final 30 minutes and the final score stayed 5-2. Howard goalie Andrew Accardi finished with four saves, while Mt. Hebron’s Matt Murphy had two.

Mt. Hebron 5, Howard 2

Goals: MH – Horrocks 2, Pradeep, Andreas, Palin; Ho – Bruner 2.

Assists: MH – Linsenmeyer, Palin, Vaughn, Beatty; Ho – Lowenkron.

Saves: MH – Murphy 2; Ho – Accardi 4.

Half: 3-1 MH.

Other scores:

River Hill 2, Atholton 0

Goals: RH - Heitzmann, J. Turney.

Assist: RH - Riso.

Saves: RH - T. Potts 5; A - N/A.

Glenelg 1, Hammond 0

Reservoir 2, Long Reach 1 (Thursday)

Oakland Mills 3, Wilde Lake 2 (Thursday)

Centennial at Marriotts Ridge — postponed to Oct. 19

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