Budding NH drops match to Warriors
Take a look around the North Harrison soccer facility.
Lights have gone up on six poles with the switch expected to flicker on in the coming weeks. A fence has been added to surround the field. It will hopefully keep cars from doing doughnuts on the field that’s become a smooth playing surface following various seedings.
It’s about pride in the program that’s slowly developing depth under coach Clint Clark.
Monday, the Cougars didn’t get the result they wanted in a Mid-Southern Conference match against visiting Scottsburg. The Warriors, putting seven seniors, three juniors and a freshman in the starting 11, were much experienced. Backed by a Matthew Jerrell hat trick, the Warriors won 6-0.
‘I want to get through to them they need to keep working and keep their heads up,’ Clark said. ‘It’s about working hard for teammates and not the individual.’
The starting 11 for North Harrison was much different in terms of class. They sent out six freshmen, four juniors and a sophomore.
‘We don’t have a single senior on this team,’ Clark said. ‘We have five juniors ‘ only three have played before ‘ three sophomores and 12 freshmen. That is what we’ve been asking for. It is the middle school program coming through.’
North Harrison was on defense much of the overcast cool afternoon. Scottsburg out-shot the Cougars 27-1.
Jerrell scored his first goal in the 19th minute with a step over to create space, beating North Harrison keeper Quinn Kaiser.
Kaiser had eight saves in the opening half but couldn’t stop two goals in the final 2:30. Logan Cooper assisted a goal by Jonah Wilson. Striking again, Wilson scored his second from distance off a counterattack.
‘Scottsburg was a good team we knew would be tough,’ Clark said. ‘Silver Creek is another conference team we expect to be tough.’
Jerrell scored two goals in the second half then had his attempt at a fourth blocked by Kaiser. The rebound went to an open Zackary Perkins. The forward pounced, putting the ball in the back of the net.
Clark said the Cougars had trouble linking passes to get going offensively
‘We have Hunter Ganote, who scored three goals in his first game but later suffered a concussion and has been out five games,’ Clark said. ‘This is his first game back. He’ll be a player. We are dealing with some injuries.’
Clark said his captains ‘ Andrew Robertson, Noah Yost and James Medina ‘ played well.
‘They are working hard,’ he said. ‘It’s a matter of settling in and learning how to play their game.’
Wins came early and often for the Cougars at the start of the season. In the month of August, North Harrison went 4-0, defeating Austin, Mitchell, Shoals and Tell City. Since then, the schedule has toughened up, with the Cougars dropping matches to Christian Academy of Indiana and Providence. Sandwich between the losses, they managed a scoreless tie against MSC-foe Salem.
‘We’ve beat the teams we should have,’ Clark said. ‘We started off 4-0 against the easier part of the schedule. We’ve showed glimpses. Against Christian Academy, we lost 5-0, but it was 0-0 at half time.’
Setting the foundation for a feeder program is what Clark hopes pays off in the end. They recently hosted a NH Kick-starters camp for kindergarten through fourth-grade students interested in soccer.
‘There were 72 kids involved and a traffic jam getting out of the parking lot,’ Clark said. ‘As a coach, we have to keep building. I’m here for the long haul.’
North Harrison’s high school team looks to get back on track when it heads to rival Corydon Central today (Wednesday) at 6 p.m. They will return home Saturday to face Northeast Dubois at noon.