CP tops Penn, impoves to 8-1
By Mark Smith email@example.com September 11, 2012 3:08PM
Crown Point keeper, Aleksander Trifonovic grabs a ball near the goal during a game against Penn on Saturday, September 8, 2012, in Crown Point. | Mark Smith~Sun-Times Media
Crown Point 5, Penn 1
PENN (4-6) 1 - 0 == 1
CROWN POINT (8-1) 1 - 4 == 5
9-8-12, 67 degrees at Crown Point
CP (1-0) Stojan Krsteski (Zach Sneiderwine) 2:40
PENN (1-1) Drayton Blankenbaker (unassisted) 17:46
CP (2-1) Carmelo Morales (Zach Sneiderwine) 43:19
CP (3-1) Stojan Krsteski (Martin Mitreski) 45:36
CP (4-1) Martin Mitreski (Johnny Vargas) 48:11
CP (5-1) Carmelo Morales (Zach Sniederwine) 62:55
Goalkeepers: Andrew Costello (Penn), Aleksandar Trifunovic (CP)
CROWN POINT (9-1, 2-1 DAC)
Coach Mike Bazin (1st year) all week dates - JV (5 p.m.), varsity (6:45)
8-15 (W) 3-0 Lake Central
8-16 (W) 10-0 @ Lowell
6-20 (W) 5-0 @ Boone Grove
8-22 (W) 2-1 @ PORTAGE
8-25 (W) 6-1 Highland
8-27 (W) 2-0 Munster
8-29 (L) 1-2(2 OTs) LaPORTE
9-5 (W) 5-5 (CP 5-4 kicks) CHESTERTON
9-8 (W) 5-1 Penn
9-10 (W) 4-2 Bishop Noll
9-12 (late Wed.) @ VALPARAISO
9-15 (Sat) a.m. 9-15 (Sat) p.m.
9-19 (Wed,) @ MERRILLVILLE
9-22 (Sat) @ Andrean (8-1) 10 a.m. (JV)
9-26 (Wed) @ MICHIGAN CITY
MERRILLVILLE (2A) Sectional
10-3 (Wed.) semifinals - 5 p.m.
10-6 (Sat) championship - 11 a.m.
10-11 (Thurs) one game - 5 p.m.
Crown Point (2A) Semistate
10-20 (Sat) semifinals - a.m.
10-20 (Sat) semifinals - p.m.
10-27 (Sat) 2A state championship at IUPUI
Updated: September 11, 2012 3:08PM
CROWN POINT — I was a ittle concerned when Penn played Crown Point to a 1-1 halftime tie late Saturday. The Penn parents and junior varsity sitting in the stands got louder and louder.
The Bulldogs, the defending Class 2A state champs, seemed a step slow. Penn clearly didn’t come all the way from St. Joseph’s County to lose.
Then in a brief gust of wind, the Bulldogs (8-1) became a different team. Crown Point just seemed to speed up and juniors Carmelo Morales (43:19), Stojan Krsteski (45:36) and senior Martin Mitreski (48:11) hit the back of the next to blow the game open.
Penn’s first-half play was erased in almost a six minute span leading CP to a 5-1 win over the visiting Kingsmen.
“For some odd reason, these kids do this,” said assistant coach Jim Eaton. “We hate telling them but when the time comes we tell them ‘You know you’re a second half team.’ Sure enough, they stepped it up again.
“Coach (Mike) Bazin and I have been working with them at playing the ball forward more and possessing the ball in their end more and they can do that. Once there’s an urgency, this team knows how to step it up. What we can’t figure out is why it takes until the second half to step it up.”
What’s interesting about the way Crown Point plays this season is that it’s not the way they played in 2011 when they won the last five playoff games in a shootout after 0-0 ties in regulation. The 2012 Bulldogs are an offensive powerhouse and that’s great to watch. But it’s not traditionally the way you win in soccer.
You can outscore people in football and basketball but in soccer, the goal (pardon the pun) is to win 1-0. When CP won a shootout tiebreaker after a 5-5 tie with Chesterton last week, it opened some eyes.
“That’s too high scoring,” admitted CP senior forward Zach Sneiderwine, who had three assists Saturday against Penn. “We need to slow things down sometimes. I’d like to win every game 1-0. We’re getting scored on too much.
“It’s a big deal to beat Penn. In my four years, last year we tied them. Two years ago, we lost to them and my freshman year, we tied them.”
CP’s four second-half goals prevented anything resembling a tie in the late Saturday (Penn played Saturday morning as well) game. All the goals were well-constructed.
Sneiderwine beat two defenders down the sideline in front of the stands and fed a pass to Morales to make it 2-1. Mitreski made a sharp feed into the penalty box for Krsteski’s goal and Mitreski then leaped into the air for a header to convert a crossing pass from Johnny Vargas.
The final goal of the game came off a corner kick by Sneiderwine with 17:05 to play. Morales scored his second goal.
It was mostly substitutes after that playing in a 60-degree September Saturday sunset.
Crown Point’s only loss, a 2-1 defeat in two overtimes Aug. 30, bothers Sneiderwine more than had they been beaten 5-0.
“It’s worse,” he said. “You’ve got to finish games off.”
Junior Tod Oram added, “If you just have an off game and you lose, it’s easier to get over that. If you lose and it’s close, you think about what you could have done.
“I’m a little surprised at how well we’ve done this year. We had three or four losses by now last year (CP was 16-6-2 overall) and we’re beating good teams with high scores.
“Against Lake Central, I expected it to be 1-0 and we win 3-0. We out ran them. I think our guys (up front) are getting more and more comfortable as the wins come. In our losing streak last year, we thought we were doing things wrong and we kept trying to fix everything. Now they have a lot of confidence that we’re doing thing right.”
BULLDOG NOTES: Martin Mitreski, who missed the state championship game after two yellow card fouls in the post-season playoffs, was in top form Saturday evening with a goal, an assist and a lot of high speed play.
Coach Mike Bazin missed Saturday’s late afternoon game because he had to stand up in a wedding. Assistant coach Jim Eaton ran the team and improved his coaching record to 1-0.
Crown Point finishes the season with six consecutive road games including a two-game day at Indianapolis Pike this Saturday.
To tie for the Duneland Athletic Conference title, CP will have to defeat Valparaiso Thursday night and then top Merrillville and Michigan City on the next two Wednesday nights. CP won the 2A state title last season but did not win the DAC.
Sophomore Erik Eksten did not play against Penn but he’s OK after getting hit inthe head against Chesterton. He did not suffer a concussion but he also had a cold so he was held out to get him healthy for the final six games.
Last week, Aleksandar Trifunovic made the key save in the shootout as CP turned back Chesterton after a 5-5 regulation tie.