Downers Grove North seniors productive against Hinsdale South in final home game
Updated: October 16, 2012 8:33PM
DOWNERS GROVE — Downers Grove North celebrated Senior Night in style Thursday, starting 10 seniors who produced an abundance of scoring chances.
The Trojans (9-9-2) snapped a three-match losing streak by knocking off Hinsdale South 3-1 at Carstens Field in Downers Grove in the regular season finale for both teams. Seniors accounted for all of the scoring, with Josh Triechel scoring twice and Cullen Cummings once. Senior Byron Perez added an assist.
“It’s just a really good feeling because this is the last time I’ll play here and all the seniors are going to play here, so it was nice to go out with two goals,” Triechel said. “And my friend Cullen, I’ve played with him since I was 5 years old. He got a goal, too. It was a really good feeling.”
The game was wide-open from the start — the two sides combined for 37 shots — but remained scoreless until Triechel gave Downers North the lead with 14:39 left in the first half.
Perez, making his first appearance since breaking his upper arm in the season opener, sent a long lead pass up the left wing to Triechel, who raced into the box and fired at Hinsdale South goalie Grant Morford. Morford, who made nine saves, deflected the shot into the air, but the ball fell behind him and Triechel ran around him to finish off the play.
The Trojans broke the game open early in the second half when Cummings and Triechel scored goals 2:18 apart. Cummings made it 2-0 by blasting a left-footed 25-yard rocket under the crossbar at the 32:54 mark, and the Triechel rifled home a 25-yarder from the right wing inside the left post for a 3-0 lead.
“Honestly, this season we haven’t had the greatest shooting, so now we’re starting to shoot more and that’s a good thing for our team because a lot of our goals have been good plays that result in a tap-in,” Triechel said. “Now that we start shooting (from distance), that’s just one more thing to our team’s game and we can be really good with it.”
Though the Hornets (4-14-1) enter the playoffs on a loss, they did manage to gain some momentum late in the match. Senior John Kotsiantos bagged his fourth goal of the season on an 18-yard free kick with 17:56 remaining and nearly added two other goals in the final minutes as Hinsdale South forced Downers North goalie Raymond Greco to make five diving saves.
“First of all, those were two beautiful goals that they scored (in the second half) — unstoppable,” Kotsiantos said. “But I think the fact that I scored showed that we didn’t give up even though we were down 3-0. It’s always good to score. It’s fun and you never want to get shut out.”
The Hornets are averaging a goal a game this fall, but most of that production has come late in matches.
“Not getting blanked is a key, but I feel like sometimes we’re getting down by two or three goals and we’re like, ‘oh, yeah, there’s 16 minutes to play, let’s start playing,’ ” Hinsdale South coach James VanDenburgh said. “It’s a little too late sometimes. But I thought we did some good things.”