• Mariners secure No. 1 seed heading into Regions this weekend
By Sean Pearson
Homer boys soccer picked up a big win on the road last week, shutting out the Kenai Kards 1-0 in Northern Lights Conference action.
A penalty kick goal by Mariner junior Drew Brown gave Homer the lead in the 54th minute of the game.
The penalty kick came after Kenai goalie Wren Norwood collided with Homer’s Max Mangue as both players battled for the ball.
The head referee called the penalty against the Kardinals, and the M’s were awarded the penalty kick.
Brown’s shot found the back of the net in the lower right corner, and Homer took a 1-0 lead.
Kenai controlled possession for much of the game, taking 18 shots on goal, compared to Homer’s seven. But Homer goalie Brian Rowe played an outstanding game in goal, turning away all 18 of Kenai’s shots.
“Well, there are days when I feel a lot stronger as a keeper than other days, but most of the time I’m pretty focused,” Rowe explained. “Then, I feel like I can stop whatever comes at me.”
Homer improved to 9-1 overall with the Thursday win over Kenai, and a Friday throttling of Seward.
The M’s opened the game against the Seahawks with four quick goals early in the game. When it became clear that Homer had control, Head Coach Warren Waldorf pulled his starters, and let his younger players get some time in.
With the second string in, Homer was able to let some of their starting players pick up much-deserved breathers.
And, while Rowe certainly enjoyed a little time off, he made it clear that his job is only easy because of the level of talent his teammates’s bring to the game.
“I can’t take all the credit, though, because without my defense, I wouldn’t have a chance at all,” he said. “They make me look great and make my job easier than the other keepers have.
With the wins, Homer wraps up the No. 1 seed in the NLC Southern Division, and head to Regions this weekend in Wasilla. There, they hope to make their way to the top and secure a berth at the State Championships in Anchorage on May 29-31.
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