Saline’s new boys soccer coach Ryan Williams was proud of his squad after the regular season opener Aug. 24. “It was a fantastic start for us, and I’m extremely proud of the work the kids put in for the full 80 minutes,” he said.
The Hornets rolled past Livonia Stevenson 2-0 on the road in a match that saw the players battle through the rain. “We played very well. It was tough conditions as it rained most of the game, but I thought we still did a great job of keeping the ball on the ground and connecting passes,” Williams said.
Saline took the 1-0 lead into the half on a goal by junior Josh Bradin. Senior Cole Larance took a shot from outside the box that the Stevenson goalkeeper deflected off the post, but Bradin was on the backside with the finishing shot. It proved to be the only score the team needed.
The Hornets added an insurance goal in the second when senior Aaron Mentzer lined up the free kick and found Larance on a quick pass, which Larance scored with a shot over the goalie, giving his squad the commanding 2-0 lead.
The two goals were plenty of offense on a night that saw the Saline defense blank Stevenson. “I was very happy with the collective team effort defensively and felt we had continuous high pressure which created turnovers,” Williams said.
Senior Nolan Krause and sophomore Quinn Fox split time in the net, with each goalkeeper doing his part to keep Stevenson off the scoreboard and spark their team. “Neither faced a ton of shots, but the few they did were difficult to deal with, and both keepers came up huge, making big saves to keep the momentum on our side,” Williams said.