EASTLAKE—A late penalty kick cost North a win over rival South on Tuesday.
The Rangers had led 2-0 before the Rebels scored a second-half goal to cut their deficit in half then benefitted from a questionable call that set up the game-tying penalty kick with just 28 seconds left in the game, which ended in a 2-2 draw.
“They got fortunate but we gave a great effort,” said North coach Steve Misick. “South got lucky but luck is a part of the game.”
Max Patrick found the back of the net to give the Rangers a 1-0 lead with 26:50 left in the first half. Kaden Kocin added a second goal 10 minutes later push the North lead to 2-0.
South increased the intensity in the second half and broke through with 25 minutes left in the game.
“My kids decided we’re just going to park the bus and sit back,” Misick said. “It’s just too much space in the midfield for us to cover with three guys. That’s where the breakdowns started to occur, especially with them running at us. We were sticking in and hoping to defend where in the first half those guys were coming up to the midfield and we were shortening the field. We were playing a nice game.”
The Rangers had opportunities to increase their lead but couldn’t capitalize.
“We had two open nets in the first 10 minutes of the second half and we didn’t put the ball in and Kaden had a breakaway late in the game too,” Misick said. “In a close game, especially a rivalry game, you have to take care of your chances.”
That left the door open for the Rebels, who were awarded a penalty kick after some confusion near the corner of the 18-yard box.
Amir Serikbaev buried the ball into the right corner of the goal to tie the game with 28 seconds left.
North dropped to 2-6-1 on the year but the Rangers have lost five games by a total of seven goals. The Rangers have remained competitive despite the loss of key starters and a youthful roster.
“We’ve lost some starting players but we’re progressing in the right direction,” Misick said. “It’s these spells of 10 or 15 minutes that have cost us. We’ve had three one-goal losses and this tie. We’ve played poorly in a couple of games but it’s just frustrating.”