Senior Spoiler: Lions score twice in 2nd half, blank Lynx

WEBSTER CITY – Carson Farmer was the best goalkeeper on the pitch at Lynx Field yesterday evening.

The funny thing is he’s not even a goalkeeper.

Farmer, a Clear Lake senior defender, made a pair of brilliant first-half deflections on open-net attacks by Webster City, and he added a third highlight-reel stop in the second half to help his Lions once again upset – if it can even be called that anymore – the 10th-ranked (Class 2A) Lynx, 2-0.

The Senior Night loss for WCHS ended a 10-match home win streak. The Lynx last loss on the familiar turf came at the hands of Ballard, 3-1, in the 2012 season opener last April 5.

After fending off WCHS in the opening half when it had the wind, Clear Lake (8-4) scored twice when it was wind-aided over the final 40 minutes. Jack Abbas put the Lions in front to stay with a goal off a corner kick in the 44th minute and Ernest Miszewski added the second goal in the 58th minute.

“It hurts, but it doesn’t hurt that much because that’s the best first half we’ve played all year,” WCHS head coach Craig Signorin said. “In the second half we didn’t play too bad either, but we didn’t take advantage of some of our chances.”

Miszewski – the smallest player on the field – played a big part in both goals. He ripped a shot from near midfield directly at the net early in the second half; Lynx goalkeeper Austin Koons made a nice leaping play to punch the ball out of bounds, but it set up the corner kick taken by Miszewski that led to the goal by Abbas.

A miscommunication in the back by the Lynx later in the half led to Miszewski with the ball and an open net in front of him. He headed it easily into the net for an insurance goal.

But it was Farmer’s play in the first half that was key. WCHS owned a 6-0 shots on goal advantage during the stretch – the Lynx finished with a 21-8 lead in shots, including 9-5 on goal – but Farmer was in the back to erase the chances.

Lions’ goalkeeper Bryson Hamilton came out too far on a corner kick in the 25th minute that Samuel Boman was able to head towards the goal, but Farmer was there to head it back out.

A little over 11 minutes later, Hamilton again left his post and was out of position, as Demar Lemus booted the ball towards the open net. But Farmer raced in from the left flank and made a diving kick save to erase the chance.

“I know (Farmer) wasn’t really happy with last year with what happened (WCHS outscored Clear Lake 16-0 in three victories) and he was kind of out to get us,” Signorin said. “He’s a good player and he works hard.”

Farmer protected the goal again in the 76th minute on another WCHS corner kick. He was able to get his body in front of the ball and deflect it before it reached the net.

Other Lynx chances were thwarted by the goal itself. Demar Lemus knocked it off the right upright in the 52nd minute and Jose Cruz sent in a laser from the left side that banged off the crossbar in the 70th minute.

WCHS (9-3) suffered its second loss of the season to Clear Lake, but Signorin says this one wasn’t as deflating as the 4-2 setback in Clear Lake on April 30.

“I thought we played well, I really did,” he said.

What did hurt was the fact that the loss came on the night his eight seniors – Koons, Boman, Brody Foster, Nick Olmstead, Kirk Greenley, Jon Tasler, Lucas Daniels and Christian Lemus – played their final regular season home match.

“I just told those guys to keep their heads up because you can’t ask for a much better class,” Signorin said. “It hurts, but these are good kids and we’ll get right back at it on Thursday.”

Koons finished with three saves. Hamilton had nine.

WCHS will close out the regular season at Humboldt on Thursday.