Petoskey failed to take advantage of a pair of good scoring opportunities early Thursday, and played Cadillac to a 0-0 draw in a Big North Conference boys’ soccer match at the Click Road Soccer Complex.
“We came out and played really well, creating a couple of point-blank chances in the first 10 minutes,” Petoskey coach Zach Jonker said. “Ultimately those turned out to be our best attempts of the night and not finishing those opportunities led to the draw.
“The heat really impacted both teams and the second half opened up with lots of space in the midfield.”
The Northmen, who are unbeaten in their last three matches, are 2-6-1 overall, 1-0-1 league.
Petoskey goalkeeper Brandon Coates picked up his first shutout of the season.
“Our defense, led by Jake Mullin, did very well to limit Cadillac’s chances to a couple of long shots that Coates easily dealt with,” Jonker said. “Similarly, Cadillac’s defense stayed organized and shut down most of our forays into the attacking third before we could get a shot on goal.
“Our best chances in the second half came off of corner kicks, but we were unable to successfully finish any of them off. It was nice to get Trent McCullough back and he played well in sending some dangerous crosses into the box.”
Adam Bayer, Matt Dankert, AJ Hoffman and Ben Schwartzfisher also played well defensively, Jonker said.
The Northmen lost Tanner Davis to injury in the final five minutes, and Petoskey again played without an injured Louie Lamberti.
“We have our fingers crossed that we can get Louie Lamberti back soon,” Jonker said. “He has missed the last five games and we hope Tanner Davis is OK. Those two guys play really important roles and are tough to replace.”
The Northmen will go to Cadillac in four weeks for another Big North match, and the teams could meet in a Division II district tournament.
“Hopefully we’ll get a chance to play Cadillac two more times this season and we can use those games to gauge our improvement,” Jonker said.
The Northmen play host to Mason in a non-conference match at Click noon, Saturday, Sept. 3.
“We’ll take (Friday) off to rest our legs so that we can get geared up for Mason on Saturday,” Jonker said. “Historically they are one of the best programs in the state and they are the best team in mid-Michigan this season. We’re catching them on the second leg of their trip as they play Traverse City West on Friday.
“Playing them will be a good tuneup for a huge league game at T.C. Central on Tuesday (Sept. 6).”
Petoskey won the JV match, 8-0. Eric Hoffman scored four goals to lead Petoskey, while Connor Ingleson had two, and Austin Redes and Trevor Flynn added one apiece.
Griffin Christensen, Phil Brown and Flynn finished with two assists each, while Erik Hosler and Ingleson had one apiece.
The Northmen are 4-2-1.
Boyne City 8, Kalkaska 0