Blackhawks’ soccer advances

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Prairie’s Caleb Brainard goes high to kick the ball forward versus Dodgeland-Hustisford Tuesday afternoon. (Photos by Ted Pennekamp)

Ramon Gonzalez (18) moves in for a great opportunity in front of the Dodgeland net.

Ben La Haie passes to Ramon Gonzalez in first-half action Tuesday afternoon.

Josh Dyer heads the ball upfield against Dodgeland.

Three Prairie du Chien players defend in front of the Blackhawks' net.

Joey Gourdin looks for an open teammate Tuesday.

Ben La Haie (15) races a Dodgeland player to the ball.

 

It was a cold and windy night on the Bluff View pitch Tuesday when the Blackhawks hosted the Cardinals of Dodgeland/Hustisford in the first round of regional play.

Prairie had a very strong first half on both sides of the ball. The defensive back line of Joey Gourdin, Jaret Semanko on the inside and Jack Peterson and Ben LaHaie on the wings and Jonah Hornseth and Creighton Groom in rotation held the Cardinals to just 13 shots and 4 corners in the first half.  

Goalie Ryan Thein had 15 first half saves leaving D/H United scoreless through 45 minutes.  

A strong rotation on the offense, between Josh Dyer, Caleb Brainard and Ramon Gonzalez with a solid middle field of Brandon Hanger, Landon Kohler and Dalton Hendrix gave Prairie multiple opportunities in the first half. There were 23 shots from 6 different players, but somehow the ball did not find the back of the net. The first half ended in a 0-0 draw.

In the second half, both teams tightened up. Prairie held D/H to only 2 shots, but 6 corner kicks while having only 11 shots themselves.  But, their determination, patience and control paid off.  In the 74th minute, Brandon Hanger delivered a well timed ball to Caleb Brainard who spun through the Cardinals for the score. Play was tense for the next 15 minutes with Dodgeland-Hustisford having a few close, but stopped, opportunities. In the 89th minute, Landon Kohler sent an indirect kick to Joey Gourdin who had shifted up from his defensive roll. Gourdin drove deep to the left baseline, then pounded the ball in for the dagger and his first career goal. PdC won the contest 2-0.

The Blackhawks advanced to the next round of regional play, traveling to Wisconsin Heights Thursday where they will meet the No. 3 seeded Vanguards.

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