SUNBURY – Big Walnut boys soccer coach Adam Gatton sees the summit of Mount Victory. But his team is having trouble navigating the rough terrain.
The Golden Eagles were dealt another tough loss when Marysville’s Nick McIntosh scored the second of his two goals with 2 minutes and 30 seconds remaining to send the Monarchs (2-3) to a 3-2 victory in non-league play Tuesday night.
“The guys worked so hard,” Gatton said. “They did everything we asked and left everything out there. We just have to find that last little hump to get over and then it’ll be downhill from there.
“It’s hard because we haven’t developed consistent winning. But I think now that they see consistent goals – they’ll see that we’re right there. It’ll just take one more oomph and we’ll get right over that hump.”
McIntosh’s game-winner came from outside the box as he slid it to the right side to beat the goalkeeper.
“They played the whole game today,” Marysville coach Terry Smith said. “It was an evenly-matched game. The opportunities were pretty much the same.”
Darwin Marcia touched a ball to Jacob Cunningham on the left, who dribbled in a few steps before releasing a shot back to the right to beat the goalie to break a scoreless game – giving the Eagles (1-5) the lead with 23:33 left.
Then, BW took a breath, Gatton said.
It proved costly as Ryan Walters hammered home a JJ Rigsby centering pass from the left to tie it up for the Monarchs with 20:25 remaining.
McIntosh gave Marysville the lead with 14:03 remaining off a Walters free kick after Wyatt Griffith took a foul on the right side.
This time, BW responded when Cunningham lobbed a ball left to right. Marcia went airborne to tip it in to tie it 2-2 with 9:16 left.
“Jacob Cunningham came off the bench and was phenomenal,” Gatton said. “That’s the best game he’s played in high school. I couldn’t take him out. He was hustling and giving everything he had. He fed us – energy-wise.”
Next up, BW opens OCC-Capital play with a trip to Canal Winchester Tuesday night at 7:15 p.m.
Follow Michael Rich on Twitter @mrichnotwealthy or contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.