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Late surge pushes Clinton past West

By By Ryan Satcher /The Meridian Star
Dec. 7, 2001
West Lauderdale put up a good fight against powerhouse Clinton in prep soccer action on Thursday night, but came up on the short end of a 5-1 score.
Clinton blew open a close game late in the second half by scoring three goals in a five-minute span. It would add another goal in the final five minutes to finish out the game.
"When you are playing good teams it doesn't take long for the score to go up on you," West Lauderdale coach Alex George said. "Overall, it was a good game for us to grow on. We are still looking for our goal in February and that is to win state."
Neither team was able to score in the first half, but both teams had many opportunities. West Lauderdale got its first chance early in the game when Josh Murphy passed the ball to Christopher Rodgers. Rodgers passed to Brandon Rodgers for a shot but the charging goalie, Chris Duncan, was able to deflect the shot away.
Clinton would come back with a scoring opportunity when Kyle Howe took a shot at the goal, but the shot went high and wide right.
Just a couple minutes later Clinton got another chance when a free kick gave Matt Fulton a good shot on goal. West Lauderdale keeper Tyler Skelton moved to his right to make the save and keep the game tied at zero.
Clinton got another free kick minutes later. This time Drew Ziegler passed to Brian Bledsoe for a shot that went wide.
The Knights got the best scoring chance of the half when a call in the box gave them a penalty kick at about the halfway point of the half. Duncan was strong in goal for Clinton and made a save on the strong, low shot.
West Lauderdale got the last real chance of the half when Murphy dribbled by a couple of defenders and Christopher Rodgers got the ball in the box. He was unable to get a good foot on the ball and the defender was able to deflect it away.
The first half ended in a scoreless tie but the second half proved to be much different, with the visiting Arrows scoring five times.
The first one came when Bledsoe headed a free kick off of the crossbar.
The ball bounced right back to him and he blasted it home to make the score 1-0.
Clinton threatened to score just seconds later when Howe passed the ball to Brian Murphy who fed Bledsoe with a nice pass.
The shot by Bledsoe was deflected wide by the Knight defense.
West Lauderdale got another penalty kick when Brandon Rodgers drew a penalty in the box.
Will Moseley kicked the ball low and to the left past the diving keeper to tie the game up 1-1 and get the momentum back for the Knights.
It did not take long for Clinton to strike back. Minutes later it got a penalty kick. Ziegler kicked the ball into the right side of the goal to take the lead again.
Bledsoe put the visitors up 3-1 seconds later by one-touching a free kick pass by Murphy into the top right corner of the net. Minutes later
Stringer kicked the ball into the right side of the net for the fourth Clinton goal.
Clinton finished out the scoring when Stringer passed the ball to Eddie Graham who settled the ball and put the shot over the charging goalie and in to make the final score 5-1.
The Knights drop to 3-1 on the year with the loss. They will back in action Monday when they play at Newton County.