MATTOON – Mahomet-Seymour, at last, can claim a victory over Mattoon — on the pitch and as of now, in the standings.
The two paragons of Apollo Conference boys soccer the last two years met for a Tuesday evening tango, a matchup that had produced low-scoring games in 2017 and 2018. The fifth meeting between the two since Mahomet-Seymour joined the league, though, was quite the opposite. The Bulldogs defeated Mattoon 7-4, moving to 3-0 and a tie atop the conference standings. Mattoon, meanwhile, dropped to 1-1-1 in the Apollo and 6-2-1 overall.
Mahomet-Seymour scored four straight goals in the second half to take a 5-3 lead. The Bulldogs ended with nine shots, most of them coming in the second half. They controlled the ball and limited Mattoon scoring chances in the final 40 minutes.
“They did a much better job of passing it,” Mattoon coach Ryan Ghere said. “In the first half, they gave the ball away to us a lot. But their runs up top were really good. They gave themselves easy shots.”
The Green Wave had a 3-1 lead at halftime, courtesy of Jakob Weder and Mason Wright scoring goals two minutes apart. They struck first when Quincy Hamilton scored eight minutes in, and took all of 55 seconds to retake the lead after Mahomet tied the score in the 23rd minute. Mattoon spent the first half exactly as Mahomet-Seymour spent the second — owning time of possession and keeping the ball in the opposing half of the field.
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“We took advantage of some of our chances, and they took advantage of a lot more of theirs,” Ghere said.
Mattoon’s Mason Wright was issued a red card after a collision near midfield eight minutes into the second half. Mahomet-Seymour scored twice in the next 10 minutes.
“I thought we settled in and played with them, and then the red card changes everything,” Ghere said. “Mason’s our rock in the back.”
Ghere was issued a red care with less than two minutes left for arguing with a referee.