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Hurricanes Blow by Burgundy
Oct. 5, 2018
⚽️ HURRICANES 6 BURGUNDY 1
On Saturday, September 29th, through the noonday nineties in North Central Florida, the Navy Blue Ocala Hurricanes hammered out a 6-1 win versus the Burgundy squad, to continue their perfect start at 3-0. That also extended their undefeated streak to 20-0-1 across the last three seasons.
Defensive captain and sweeper Josh Sieradzki, who has been an integral part of all 21 matches, affirmed, "We're working together well. Each week is better. We just need to keep talking out there." Indeed, the Hurricanes do work relentlessly with competitive drills each practice, and expect to finish practices with wind sprints to be ready for the persisting heat wave next Saturday versus Aqua. "We are tougher fighters with each match," said Canes Coach Fred Miley after the win. "We have locked onto a few key drills that push our competitive edge for endurance and contact plays. We have some snarly habits now when it comes to winning loose balls. Nobody is scared of contact, nobody waits for the ball, and nobody fades in the second half. Even our newcomers Chase and Emily have stepped up very competitively. There is nobody just learning to kick a ball anymore. Our kids are connecting already as an exciting squad to watch. They are already at a premier U15 level. Josh wasn't kidding. We build from the back line each season, and he knows. We are a team now."
Hurricanes speaking captain Ryan Gorman won the toss and elected to defend the south goal first, with a slight breeze at the Canes' backs. Two of the Canes girls opened scoring in the eighth minute as striker Lainey Liles took a smooth assist from left midfielder Mia Liebegott, after a give and go from Lainey originally, who ran back to midfield after that razzle dazzle with a big smile for her friends. "We have some very smart and tough girls on our squad," said their coach. "They don't back down for anyone, and they have a lot of fun. All six of our girls are not big and not older players, but our girls are bold, smart, creative and skilled. In a lot of ways, Angie is the heart of the team, and has a great manner of expecting the most of herself in the very grueling outside midfield position, with a smile for everyone. Tessa stands out as probably the scrappiest striker in the league -- she is a fighter down to the bone, stays connected with her passing, and knows her windows for hard, accurate shots. As a striker, she's also one of the best natural defenders on the team, which helps us surprise defenders who keep the ball too long, because she can strip it from some of these bigger boys who underestimate her, and very quickly flip the script. GiGi is our smallest player and will take on the world with her fearless hustle and smarts around the ball as a striker. She has a rugged work ethic, and we see her creating many chances late in a match when others can't keep up. Our newcomer Emily is locking down the right side with plenty of reps now, and she's as good as any defender, with a learning curve as eager as you want. She is reading a soccer book to become more informed in her first season. Mia brings a load of experience and skill, with vision and composure. Nothing rattles her. She is a stellar student and thrives on challenge, with some of her best plays happening under pressure. Our nine boys are there like their brothers. It's a solid team and we have a lot of fun. There's definitely a lot of laughter even as we work hard in practices. And you can hear their humor in the matches."
In short order after the Liles/Liebegott goal, striker Ryan Gorman took a lead pass from Nate "Q" Quiroz, and nailed his first tally of the season. Both boys went up on the boards together with that play, and it was only a warm-up for more things to come from Captain Ryan. The Canes finished the first quarter with a 2-0 lead going into the first water break. "Every water break was important today," said Miley. "We were missing two players, and rotated our two subs in and out of the midfield and striking line frequently. Only a few defenders never came out."
In the thirtieth minute Ryan took another assist from Mia for his next goal, and the Hurricanes gulped down water and Gatorade at halftime with a solid 3-0 start. "At that point we felt good about what we were doing out there," said Miley. The opening of the second half found the Hurricanes sharking around the Burgundy net with even more confidence. Just a few minutes in, Mia threw the ball in from the left touchline to a bolting friend of hers, Tessa Ward, who made quick work of goal #4, her personal third on the season. Mia's third assist in a match is an all-time squad record. Burgundy decided enough was enough and put together a strong counterattack off a back line steal, catching a couple of Hurricanes defenders out of position for the transition. "We don't have our first shutout yet," said Miley, whose squad has outscored opponents 14-4 in the first three matches, "but we are learning from the goals we give up. That was a positioning issue on a fast counterattack that generally requires a bit more experience than our wing backs have at this point, but they both are fast learners, and the lesson won't be lost on them."
Coach Corey noticed that the Burgundy squad was keying on Tre Ward, who led the Canes in goals the first two matches. "Coach Corey picked up on this when we subbed Tre out. That approach of theirs was no accident," said Miley with a smile. "They had some intelligence on our operations," he added with a bigger smile. "But that's what we like. You think you can lock us out because you key on one player, and we will hit you with our whole team. We don't lean on one player or another, and we are very tough on teams who do. That's our public philosophy: be a team. All of our kids come out fighting, and anyone on our squad can step up and score. We see that in practice all the time." Before the second water break, Lainey knocked in her second goal of the day and third on the season, by pouncing on a shot rebounded off the Burgundy goalkeeper. "Lainey's really picking up some timing and positioning on that top line lately," said Miley. "She is seeing the development of each play and wisely learning the art of being in motion off the ball for her chances on net."
At the water break, Coach Corey asked Ryan and Lainey his daughter who would get a hat trick? It turned out to be Ryan, with help from Angie Loforte's first assist. All three of his first goals on the season came tumbling into the squad's first hat trick. "Ryan is one of only three players who has done that for us over the last three seasons," Miley noted. We were glad to see Q and Angie get up on the boards, as well as Mia contributing her own hat trick of assists. We had some great fighters today. Logan Richie fought very hard for loose balls and presented strong attacking challenges around their net. His older brother Chase Richie did well on the one save he needed on his first day as goalkeeper, stepping up for Josh Gangelhoff who could not be here. All in all, a strong outing on a very hot day."
The 3-0 Hurricanes face Coach Hart's 2-1 Aqua squad next Saturday, October 6th, on Field 3, at Ocala's Big Sun Soccer Complex. "We will set up our players as fighters for this one," said their coach. "We know Coach Hart leads his squad with an intense style, and his kids don't quit. Our focus is on competing against ourselves each week. We aim to be better than we were the week before. We expect a fight from Aqua, but we aim to take our fight to them and wear them down in the heat. We calmly believe we can do that. Nobody outworks these kids, and we are starting to own the confidence that comes with the work."
MATCH 3 FOULS CK SAVES SOG GOALS
CANES 2 5 1 12 6
BURGUNDY 0 1 6 1 1
~ water break 2-0 ~
Halftime: Canes 3 Burgundy 0
Tessa/Mia, throwing assist
from left touch line
Burgundy goal, counterattack
~ water break 5-1 ~
Final: Canes 6 Burgundy 1
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