MHS soccer routs Chargers, 10-0

By Grant Guggisberg

The Manhattan High boys soccer team is determined to finish the regular season strong.

After pounding Highland Park last Thursday in a 10-0 shutout win, the Indians did it again Monday at home, dismantling the Topeka West Chargers in a 10-0 win.

The Indians led 5-0 at halftime after outshooting the Chargers 12-2 in the first half.

Jacob Stutheit scored the first two goals for the Indians, who played the first 11 minutes without a score. But then they turned it on in a hurry, scoring twice in the 25th minute and adding two more within a 3-minute span to end the first half.

In the second half, it was more of the same, with the game ending on Adam Lease’s shot past the goalkeeper with 14 minutes still to play.

MHS coach Frank Alonso was most pleased with the way his team has been capitalizing on its chances lately.

“We’ve kind of turned that around,” he said. “We’ve been averaging about 3-4 goals a game. The chances have been there. We’ve been much more clinical up front. Our issues come with team defense.”

Eric Gray finished the game with two goals, while Evan Williams, Brandon Religa, Aaron Cole, Davis Matthews and Jordan Price also adding single goals.

Price’s goal was accompanied by some controversy, as the defender got the chance to move up and play forward and ran ahead of the pack for a score, making it 9-0. The senior was excited and the crowd was too, but he drew the ire of the Topeka West bench when he did a backflip in celebration.

The soccer team has one more game in the regular season on Thursday, and it’s a big one. The Indians host Junction City on senior night. A win would clinch the No. 2 seed for regionals.

“It will be a chance to thank the seniors for all their hard work,” he said. “It should be a great night.”

Alonso said the potential playoff matchups will not be easy. If things stay the way they are now, the Indians would potentially see No. 3-seeded Lawrence in the second round, a team they beat 1-0 to start the season.

“It’s a strong region,” Alonso said. “It’s always been a good region, but it’s had a couple teams that have been somewhat weaker. It’s pretty darn strong. So we’re going to get a good game.”

Thursday’s home finale is scheduled for 6:15 p.m. at Anneberg Park.

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