Monday, January 22, 2018
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PK Lifts Mounts

With the sun down and the lights on at Talon Field in Denver on Thursday, Cocalico and Ephrata found themselves locked in a defensive slog, tightly called and tightly contested, as their Lancaster-Lebanon League Section Two boys soccer clash pushed on well into the night.

The visiting Mountaineers, with an unblemished record on the line, outlasted their rivals, clinching the game on an Andrey Patrushev penalty kick with 6:16 remaining in the second overtime period. As the Mounts turned back the Eagles 1-0.

“We’re a pretty resilient group,” Ephrata coach Rob Deininger said. “We’ve found ways to get it done.”

Ephrata goalkeeper Cole Hummel recorded five saves for his fifth shutout of the season.

Turning point: Patrushev, a senior forward, lined up for the gamewinning kick opposite Cocalico goalkeeper Peyton Stetter (13 saves) and planned his attack.

“Usually, I go to the right,” Patrushev said. “Since last game against Cocalico, I scored on a PK and also went right, I thought the goalie was going to go there. So I just went left, and it worked.”

Patrushev stutterstepped toward the ball and sent it low to the left, rippling the netting and giving extending a season-long win streak for the Mounts (9-0 in Section Two, 12-0 overall).

Stars of the game: Ephrata’s Aaron Cummings set up the gamewinning goal by drawing the decisive penalty. The senior forward pestered the Cocalico backfield throughout the cool, blustery evening.

“Aaron was just a man among boys,” Deininger said. “He’s decided to take people on and use his body and go. He just has the ability and has just made us so much more powerful lately.”

Meanwhile, the Eagles (6-3, 8-4) gained confidence from their defense. Junior midfielder Joe Zimmerman shadowed Patrushev throughout the game, limiting the opportunities of the section’s top goal-scorer.

“I’m definitely proud of our defense,” Cocalico coach Derek Sipe said, “and our team as a whole.”

Key statistic: Four of Ephrata’s games have been decided in overtime, including a 3-2 decision over Cocalico Sept. 7. Patrushev netted the game-winning goal in all four games.

Quotable: “We’ve been playing really well lately,” Sipe said, “and they’ve been dominant all year long. These are the games you want to see this time of year.”