PERRYSBURG — Lightning delays and tie games are becoming a regular thing when Perrysburg boys soccer gets caught up in any important Northern Lakes League match.
Last week, Perrysburg and Northview had a one-hour lightning delay at Sylvania’s Cat Stadium.
That delay occurred at halftime and the game resumed, ending in a 1-1 tie.
Tuesday, Perrysburg hosted Anthony Wayne at Steinecker Stadium in another key NLL matchup.
The game was tied 2-2 with 21:14 showing on the clock when game officials called it because of an impending storm on the horizon. This time, the tie stuck because the game had reached the second half.
Perrysburg moves to 4-3-2 overall and 1-0-2 in the NLL. AW, coming off a 1-0 win at Lakewood St. Edward Saturday, moves to 5-3-2 overall and 2-0-1 in the conference.
For nearly 60 minutes, the Yellow Jackets and Generals took turns controlling play on the pitch.
In the first half, Perrysburg outshot AW by only 4-3, but the Yellow Jackets managed to score the only goal off a set piece generated by sophomore forward Alexander Diaz.
Thanks to a Generals foul, Diaz booted a direct free kick just yards from the corner arc, and he sent it wide and out to junior defenseman Trevor Pollock.
Pollock, who had been a menace on the backfield for the Generals’ offense, sent a cross front and left toward sophomore midfielder Matthew Zinn.
Zinn caught it perfectly with a header and one-timed the soccer ball past AW junior goalkeeper Sam Rupp with 17:44 remaining in the half.
Defensively, Pollock had three non-goalie saves in the first half, and Perrysburg sophomore goalkeeper Isaac Revill knocked down three saves to keep the Generals off the board.
In addition, Perrysburg controlled play for much of the half, forcing 10 goal kicks and punts by Rupp, while Revill only needed four.
“For us, it was a phenomenal first half. We played the way we wanted to,” Perrysburg coach Dennis Jeansonne said.
AW coach Brian Billings said, “I thought we came out flat and tentative and didn’t follow our game plan. Perrysburg pushed the game and got the goal for their efforts.”
Everything turned at the start of the second half. Two minutes and two seconds into the half, AW senior center forward Collin Parker, on his second shot inside of two minutes, found the right corner of the net to tie the game.
Just 15 seconds later, on his third shot in two-and-a-half minutes, Parker scored his second goal on a breakaway, giving the Generals a 2-1 lead with 37:43 remaining.
“Anthony Wayne came out stronger than we did at the start of the second half, and we fell asleep the first five minutes and they put two goals on us,” Jeansonne said.
“We know we can’t do that, and we let down when we shouldn’t have. I told the boys I can’t do that for him,” he continued. “They need to come out fired up.”
Billings said, “We regrouped at second half, reiterated our plan and had some moments of quality from Collin to bring us leave and then to take the lead.
Diaz had the game-saver for the Jackets, and just in time. Rupp managed a diving save on Diaz’s first shot, but Diaz took the rebound and sent it right back into the net, tying the game at two goals apiece with 22 minutes remaining.
“We battled back, and we started controlling the ball again and we got that tying goal,” Jeansonne said.
Only 46 seconds went off the clock after Diaz’s goal before lightning made it official and the game was over. Nobody, not even the coaches, fans, or players wanted that.
“Unfortunately, the lightning ended the game and coach Brian and I both wanted to continue,” Jeansonne said.
Billings said, “We needed to score the third when we had the chance and failed to organize properly to not concede. Hope it’s a lesson learned.”
The second half saw AW outshoot Perrysburg, 9-3, with Parker getting four shots on goal. Revill finished with 11 saves and Revill had five.