|10/17/2019 3:20:00 PM|
Hunters squeeze by North Branch in section opener for boys soccer
Duluth Denfeld 2, North Branch 1
In the opening round of the Section 7A playoffs against fourth-seeded Duluth Denfeld, the 13th-seeded Vikings played what head coach Jake Borash called “by far the best game we played all season in terms of passing, mentality, want and desire.” But when it was all over, the Hunters had squeaked out a 2-1 win over the Vikings, ending the Vikings season. The game was played last Thursday at Public Schools Stadium in Duluth.
Denfeld’s first goal came 18 minutes into the first half when the ball deflected off a Viking defender who was trying to block a crossing pass through the Viking box. Borash said “that sequence was the most unfortunate 15 seconds I have ever seen in a soccer game. After they scored, I thought it would get out of hand. We controlled the rest of the half and we had some really good looks on goal, hitting the crossbar once.” The Vikings tied it up at the 27-minute mark when Harry Toussaint took a run between two center backs as Aaron Maroschek fed him with a perfect through ball and Toussaint scored a beautiful goal. In the final minute of the half, a Denfeld defender clearly blocked a Viking shot with his arm in the Denfeld box, which should have resulted in a red card for the player and a penalty kick for the Vikings. But the referee waved off the call, saying the player’s arm was in a regular position – whatever that means. The score was 1-1 at the half.
Denfeld star Keegan Chastey scored on one of his two touches in the second half, in the 54th minute, to send the Vikings down to defeat. Borash said “We deserved to win that game. It’s unfortunate it came out the way it did, but if our season had to end this was a great way to end it.”