Manhattan High Varsity Soccer defeats Highland Park

Kris Long, Staff Writer

Manhattan High Varsity soccer team won 7-0 against Highland Park on Thursday, making their fourth clean sheet in a row.

They had two players injured from their starting 11. Mitch Hutchinson, senior and starting forward, suffered a concussion in last Thursday’s game against Topeka High. Caleb Deloach, sophomore and starting goalie, did not play because of a rolled ankle. Varsity second goalie Masson Garren, senior, played his first full Varsity game of the season in his place.

Though Manhattan is used to playing on a turf field, Highland Park’s field is grass. This makes shots less accurate and the ball harder to dribble. The grass on the field wasn’t very well kept either according to assistant coach Pedro Espinoza.

“The whole south side of the field was covered in water and mud,” Espinoza said. “I really think that we would have done much better if not for the field.”

The players also thought the field presented problems they hadn’t experienced yet.

“Their field is the worst I’ve ever played on,” Cole Schmitt, Varsity starting midfielder, said.

Manhattan scored five goals in the first half: three by Hunter French, junior starting forward, and two by Max Lansdowne, senior starting forward.

“A lot of [the goals] were… one on one with the keeper and balls bouncing around in the box,” Carter Wiens, junior starting midfielder, said.

The first goal was scored by French at the beginning of the match with an assist by Manny Effiong, senior midfielder. It was followed by a goal by Lansdowne who received a deep pass from Schmitt. Lansdowne also had a shot on goal in the middle of the first half, he thought it was in and was about to start celebrating when the ball got stuck in a puddle just in front of the goal line.

French scored again around mid-way through half, followed again by Lansdowne who outran defenders and tapped it in. French had the last goal of the first half from a corner taken by Wiens.

Manhattan scored two more goals in the second half, the first by Lansdowne, with an assist from French, and the second by French, with an assist by Wiens.

Schmitt, sophomore starting midfielder,  had the most assists in the game, three in total with two to Lansdowne and one to French. The runner-up was Wiens with two, both to French. Manhattan dominated every aspect of the game. Highland Park had no shots on target throughout the entire match.

“We all connected passes well and we all played pretty well as a team in my opinion,” Wiens said. “There’s not much left to say, we scored seven goals.”

The team played against Topeka West last night in Topeka. The next home game is tomorrow at 6:15 p.m. at Bishop Stadium against Junction City.