By Gene Renfro
JOHNSON CITY — The Elizabethton soccer team tried, but the Cyclones saw the winds blow a 5-0 decision in favor of University High Tuesday in a key Region 1A/AA contest.
The Cyclones, now 3-5 overall and 2-2 in the league, uncorked seven shots while University High tried 27 over the 80 minutes. Only three of Elizabethton’s attempts were on goal compared to 13 by the home squad.
Elizabethton attempted to even the score after losing a 2-1 Region 1A/AA semifinal contest to the Junior Bucs that ended the Cyclones’ 2011 season.
The visitors were able to push the ball forward against a headwind, but the Cyclones lost the ball inside the 18-yard box two minutes after the contest started. Five minutes later, Ashton Stevens uncorked a free kick from 25 yards out.
In the 28th minute, a Cyclone cross was grabbed out of the air by University High’s goalkeeper Benjamin Page. For Page, it was one of his three saves.
University High got a goal from Kevin Mast in the 14th minute. Mast also provided assists on two of the Junior Bucs’ three second-half scores.
Right before the opening half closed, Westley Ongengco was able to get a shot past Luke Broyles, who left his goal. Ongengco’s score came in the 37th minute.
“At halftime I felt like we made two errors and we would come out and fix that,” Elizabethton head coach Bill McClay said. “I thought maybe we could get the ball forward too, but we never seemed to keep the ball.”
Conner Williams scored twice in the second half from long distance. His goal in the 45th minute was on a free kick from 25 yards away. During the 77th minute he struck again from 30 yards out with a score into the lower right corner.
Lowell Williams added his name to the goal-scoring column in between Williams’ goals.
The Cyclones tried to capitalize on a late corner kick, but Darion Simerly’s shot went wide. However, a second corner kick came out of the play in the 75th minute.
“We had the ball forward in the first half, but couldn’t pull the trigger,” McClay said about the attack that led to three first-half shots.